Whether you count it as contemporary art or urban eyesore, graffiti in Brisbane is on the upswing and that includes the once tidy suburb of Forest Lake.

Between 2009 and 2016, there has been a decline in graffiti tags in Brisbane and its suburbs but a sudden spike in 2016 and 2017 has broken the downtrend. The Brisbane City Council recorded that over the past two years, inner-city suburbs and other suburbs such as Forest Lake, Fortitude Valley, and Greenslopes have recorded a rise in graffiti.

 

An Eyesore for the Council

The Council sees these tags as an eyesore. They have funded $3 million per year for the prevention and removal of graffiti. The next three years have an even bigger budget with an additional $500,000 to allocate for the review and upgrade of the graffiti intelligence system that they use.

Matthew Bourke, the Council’s Lifestyle and Community Services Chairman, revealed that there were 119 offenders with 3774 graffiti charges last year. In light of this, they are now putting a graffiti vandals on notice, and people caught will be charged. They also have 11 dedicated removal crews to monitor over 400 graffiti hot spots in the city.

 

Spotless No More?

For the suburb of Forest Lake, this came as quite a surprise. In 2010, it was named the city’s tidiest suburb during the Spotless Suburb competition in partnership with Keep Australia Beautiful. The suburb was a clear winner when it came to litter and graffiti control as well as environmental awareness.

Still, Forest Lake residents have been very proactive in reporting graffiti in the area. With their efforts, it may not be long until we see the suburb graffiti-free and a tough competition for others as the most Spotless Suburb of the year.