SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 News) - Big graffiti markings have popped up off exit ramps in Salt Lake City and on the back of buildings.
Plain and simple, there's a growing graffiti problem in the Salt Lake Valley. And it's not just on abandoned buildings.
"It probably should concern everybody...it's right on the front of active businesses...right on main street, everywhere," said Brent Ahlander, Graffiti Response Coordinator for Salt Lake CIty.
Brent tells ABC4's Emerson Lotzia that he's seen the number of graffiti cases skyrocket over the past decade.
"At the rate we're going this year we're going to be at maybe 18,000 or 19,000 [cases]," said Ahlander. "Ten years ago when I first started we did under 5,000."
Over the weekend a group of vandals spray painted the back of the Blockbuster in Sugarhouse. Brent and his team made it out Tuesday morning to take care of the damage.
"There are certain parts in town that get hit on a regular basis," said Ahlander. "We'll be there three times a week for three or four weeks."
On top of Ahlander's 5-man team, 258 volunteers assist annually to help get rid of unwanted are on buildings. They use 2,775 gallons of paint. Some of the folks lending a hand are the ones who vandalized the structure to begin with.
"Sometimes it gets cleared up so quickly, not as many people see it so they're not aware it's happening," said Ahlander. "It takes away from things that should be getting done otherwise."
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