Thursday, March 8, 2012

No More Bikes, Brighter Lights

Recently the guy who came up with the "Broken Windows" theory of crime passed away.  His theory holds that if a community and law enforcement take care of the small signs of crime and neglect, bigger crimes are less likely to happen.  RIP, James Q. Wilson.

One neighbor noticed some small improvements in Buena Park and wrote in:
"Hi, UU.  Just a few observations here in the Buena Park area of Uptown.
  • My building has had a problem with bikes being locked to our fence out front and the owners never returning.  In past years, calls to the former Alderman's office did not result in much assistance in the matter.  But I called the office a few weeks ago and found them to be quite helpful.  They stated they would put in a City service request.  About two weeks later cards were attached to both of the bikes alerting the owners that if they did not contact the number on the card, they would be removed in a week.  I was impressed.  Looking forward to seeing them go this week.  They have been there for about 6 months without ever being used.
  • Then last week I went for an early run in the dark.  I noticed crossing over Broadway that there was way more light than ever before.  At the time I did not know why, but I recently noticed additional lights on the old street poles.  The new lights match the kind of streetlights on the side streets.  Last fall I noticed that all the older streetlights on Broadway were repainted black.  (Some were green, some were black, some were only half painted leaving the pole two colors.)  Now these extra lights have been added to the sidewalk side of the pole.  This photographed light is right over where the loitering takes place in front of Public Storage, which was usually pretty dark at night.  They look so much better and certainly repainting them is a fraction of the price of all new light poles. Seems like a very good solution given the state of City finances.
Just my opinion, but it seems like the services that our Alderman has control over in the ward have improved dramatically.  I just thought I would share two of the more concrete examples that I had observed in the past week."

BTW, the light pole painting and brighter street lights on Marine and Broadway, as mentioned above, were funded by 46th Ward "menu money."  To see how these discretionary funds are being spent, click here.


  1. Some really positive changes! Thanks to the alderman and his staff, and thanks, UU, for sharing this good news!

  2. I've been saying this for a year on here. NYC was once well known for vagrancy but the "quality of life" crack down has improved crime rates there. Our police seem to only care about these crimes when it effects tourists.