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Graffiti marks Maple Leaf walls along Roosevelt Way

Posted by Mike on February 15th, 2013

Northeast 85th Street at Roosevelt Way Northeast this morning.

Cliff, at Art Tile, emails:

“The north side of our building was tagged last night. Green spray paint. Tried to report it on line but I don’t think the system took the report.

“Keep an eye out.”

In fact, in addition to Art Tile, at 8511 Roosevelt Way Northeast, several other walls were marked on the west side of Roosevelt between 85st and 86th streets.

Tags: Uncategorized

17 reader comments so far ↓

  • 1 Judy // Feb 15, 2013 at 12:23 pm

    This is alarming. We’ve had some tagging there before–I find it hard to believe nobody saw it happening. We just painted that wall about a year ago, so that’s doubly upsetting. Keep your eyes open, everyone!

  • 2 Dale // Feb 15, 2013 at 12:45 pm

    A few years ago there was a spate of tagging along 15th NE, including our building. We found that using Simple Green and elbow grease removed it while the paint was still new. It wasn’t so easy for paint that had hardened in the sun. But it is worth the effort soon, rather than repainting the entire wall again.

  • 3 Debi W // Feb 15, 2013 at 1:10 pm

    Disturbing! It is very important to remove the tags ASAP. Otherwise it can encourage more vandalism.

  • 4 Nancy // Feb 15, 2013 at 1:30 pm

    If you send the photos to SPD North Precinct Community Police Team Officer Brian Thomas at, he may recognize the tags. CPT sometimes takes photos of tags to the local high schools to try to figure out who did it; at least Kip Strong from Lincoln Sector does. These are in Union Sector, Brian’s beat.

  • 5 Chris // Feb 15, 2013 at 2:07 pm

    OH NO! Better call the feds! Somebody made a boring wall slightly more colorful! Oggity boogity!

  • 6 Ron // Feb 15, 2013 at 2:13 pm

    Chris, drink some spray paint.

  • 7 Soox // Feb 15, 2013 at 2:57 pm

    Murals = OK. This kind of crap is just ugly filth by kids that need a good smack. Yep.

  • 8 Scout // Feb 15, 2013 at 6:31 pm

    Perhaps Chris should take a class to differentiate art and vandalism.

  • 9 Mark // Feb 16, 2013 at 12:03 am

    For anyone paying attention, graffiti has been a problem here for a good number of years. Fences along 5th Avenue, traffic signs, utility “boxes” – don’t know what they’re for, but they’re handy for tagging. I know MLCC tried at one point to get the neighborhood’s attention, to call the city’s attention to it, but I guess we’re all a little too busy or distracted to get involved. As for Chris, best not to feed the troll.

  • 10 Chris // Feb 16, 2013 at 11:09 am

    It’s just paint, guys. Vandalism is when somebody breaks your windows, slashes your tires, etc. Graffiti is just graffiti. Most of the time it’s rather respectful, and follows the rules, and tags are generally confined to public property rather than businesses. And even in this case, they tagged big blank parts of walls, rather than say the ornate and nice tile, or something that would actually be damaging or difficult to clean up. This takes, what, $4 in paint and 15 minutes to paint over.

    When people are being physically attacked, sexually assaulted, and robbed in the area, it seems like a bizarre overreaction to worry about some stray paint which at its most egregious can only offend someone’s aesthetic sensibilities. Better call out the SWAT team for a tactical response: crummy aesthetics are under assault!


  • 11 Chris C. // Feb 16, 2013 at 1:31 pm

    It’s called the broken windows theory “other Chris.” It not only might encourage further vandalism, but also other crimes cause it makes it look like our community doesn’t take to care of itself. I couldn’t agree more with Debbie W about removing it right away.

  • 12 MC // Feb 16, 2013 at 2:53 pm

    I’ve been disappointed to see the increase in spray paint vandalism over the last couple of years. It seems especially bad as you go south down into commercial districts of Roosevelt / U-District. I also notice it on my commute downtown on sides of the highway and the bridge. It gets painted over regularly, then comes back just as quick (by the way this is not interesting, artistic graffiti–it’s ugly). It seems totally pointless and adds to the crumbling infrastructure vibe. Don’t get me started on weeds in the medians and curbs . . .

    Speaking of broken windows theory, what’s going on with the Tubs property?

  • 13 anotherEric // Feb 16, 2013 at 5:16 pm

    Your “broken windows theory” is only valid if it doesn’t get cleaned up or repaired.

    I would suggest that the business owner adds some lighting on the side of the building to make it a less desirable place to tag at night.

  • 14 anotherchris // Feb 17, 2013 at 10:35 am

    unfortunately 90% of graffiti “artists” have zero artistic talent

  • 15 Susan // Feb 17, 2013 at 4:22 pm

    The owner of the Tubs building allows graffiti and doesn’t seem inclined to do anything with the property.


  • 16 Susan // Feb 18, 2013 at 2:40 pm

    Sure is taking a long time for that wrecking ball to arrive for Tubs.

  • 17 Dan // Feb 19, 2013 at 6:11 pm

    Possible solution if this keeps happening over the years: hire an artist or graf artist to paint the wall, generally taggers will respect that. I love the mural on the wall on the coffee shop across from Coopers on Lake City Way, it’s bright and colorful and doesn’t seem to have been defaced since it went up like 8 or 10 years ago.