July 25, 2014 By Christian Murray
Sunnyside Shines, a business improvement group that promotes this neighborhood’s commercial district, announced this week that it was responsible for cleaning more than 250 instances of graffiti for the fiscal year ending June 30.
The BID, which spent $6,600 on the program, cleaned up graffiti from storefronts, security gates and sidewalks within its boundaries, which covers Queens Boulevard (from 38th to 50th Streets) and Greenpoint Avenue (42nd Street to Queens Boulevard).
Rachel Thieme, the executive director of Sunnyside Shines, said that removing graffiti contributes “to a better-looking neighborhood in which to live, shop and do business.”
Thieme said that taggers have historically targeted the wall by Rite Aid at Greenpoint Avenue and 46th Street, as well as the wall next to Metro PCS, located at the corner of 45th and Greenpoint.
“We have had to paint those walls several times,” Thieme said. However, she said, in recent times taggers have left those walls alone.
Thieme said that the BID sends an employee out with a clipboard on an ongoing basis to write down the locations of the graffiti before notifying a contractor to paint over them.
She said that she is hoping that business owners and residents will call her office (718) 383-0566 or Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer’s office (718) 383-9566 to notify the BID of any instances that they see.
Van Bramer’s office has allocated about a quarter of the funds to cover the BID graffiti program. His office also has an anti-graffiti hotline that people can call to take care of graffiti throughout the neighborhood—not just within the BID boundaries.
In a statement, Van Bramer said he was proud to support the BID’s program and “its success, in conjunction with my office’s anti-graffiti initiative has kept hundreds of local business and residential properties clean.”
To report graffiti and get it cleaned, Van Bramer’s hotline is 718-383-9566