Archive for Thursday, December 29, 2005

Graffiti vandals keep striking new building

December 29, 2005


A new downtown luxury condominium building has been marred repeatedly by graffiti in recent days.

"I had no idea it was going to be this kind of a problem," said Bo Harris, developer of the $9 million Hobbs Taylor Lofts in the 700 block of New Hampshire. "It's very frustrating that somebody can actually get away with it. I just wish I understood what the point was."

The first batch of graffiti appeared between Dec. 16 and 19 on the Hobbs Taylor building and across the street at 745 N.H., which houses a handful of businesses. This past weekend, a different design of graffiti was painted along the 700 block of New Hampshire - including on the lofts building - and on Eighth Street between New Hampshire and Massachusetts streets.

Harris said he didn't yet know details of what it would take to remove the graffiti, but he expected it to be costly.

Graffiti has been popping up on the just-finished $9 million Hobbs Taylor Lofts in the 700 block of New Hampshire. This marking on the building's west side facing New Hampshire Street was photographed on Christmas.

Graffiti has been popping up on the just-finished $9 million Hobbs Taylor Lofts in the 700 block of New Hampshire. This marking on the building's west side facing New Hampshire Street was photographed on Christmas.

"Our maintenance company is consulting now to find the best way to permanently remove it," Harris said.

Carol Roberts, a resident of the Hobbs-Taylor lofts, said the graffiti wasn't the first incident of vandalism at the building.

"There's been some minor damage," she said. "Right after we moved in, somebody threw a brick through the door."

Harris also said that during construction of the lofts, someone tore up the sod that had been laid around the building.

A few of the other establishments hit by graffiti in recent days include Static Hair Salon, 12 E. Eighth St., the Bottleneck, 737 N.H., and the back of Teller's, 746 Mass.

Graffiti removal is the responsibility of the property owner under city code. Normally, property owners have 14 days to remove a piece of graffiti after being notified of it.

If the graffiti isn't removed by then, the city arranges for its removal and bills the owner.


Sandman 12 years ago

What don't you ask that Steffes character?

Oh yeah, he's not responsible for what goes on outside his club.

classclown 12 years ago

Hire security armed with paintball guns. Fight fire with fire.

blessed3x 12 years ago

Investigate that kook that climbed into the half-dead, fully diseased elm tree that used to stand there in order to halt construction.

craigers 12 years ago

I am really liking your ideas this morning classclown. I don't think the LJWorld should have put a picture in the paper of the grafitti since that is what the vandals wanted is attention. Oh well, I think we should ban spray paint!!!

lonesome_breeze 12 years ago

"Taggers" are such punks.. Nobody notices them as they live their unimpressive humdrum lives by day. They do no good for society, and probably non of them can hold a job . But by the dark of night , armed with a dim-witted IQ, and a new found feeling of self importance, and a can of spray paint, they damage property by leaving their tag on everything in sight.. " Hey look at me I'm a worthless tagger" I can damage property with my goofy tag. What losers.

sweetpeagj 12 years ago

Maybe we should just blame it on the drunken Free State students. That seems to be a popular theme these days. Seriously though, they are getting the attention they want ecspecially by it being in the paper that this will only increase these dimwits to keep going.

gccs14r 12 years ago

The longer he leaves it up, the worse it'll get. The place I work for got tagged a couple of times recently, but it was gone that day, so the point of the tag was lost. They've not been back.

If Bo Harris wants a stone façade that's easier to clean, he needs to swap the limestone for granite. Meanwhile, the HOA is going to have to buy at least two security guards to walk the perimeter at night if they want to keep the place clean.

gccs14r 12 years ago

Looking at the photo, it's already worse. A few days ago only the green one was there.

lonesome_breeze 12 years ago

Larryville_79 why dont you invite the taggers to come to your home and use the exterior of it for their own personal "LOOK AT ME" canvass... I don't know what kind of blinders you have been running around in, but if you haven't noticed the LJW is one of the most liberal-biased newspapers this side of the Boulder newpaper "The Colorado Dailey"and it probably rivals the newspaper in Berkley, California. Your logic about don't move into the neighbor hood if you don't like it is whack. Graffitti is against the law...period.

bankboy119 12 years ago

larry, you forget to take your meds this morning? Of course the rich neighborhoods are going to get more attention....and the new buildings are going to get more attention. They also are locate how far away from the LJW? Oh that's right, they're 20 feet away. It's pretty easy for somebody to walk 20 feet.

dviper 12 years ago

Come on Bo! You build a $9M building that is very controversial to begin with, and then don't have the foresight to put in an exterior security system that monitors your investment 360 degrees day and night? What were you thinking about:.Dadaism? When you do install this system make sure you put in a few extra cameras that capture the actions across and down the streets, and put in the best system you can get, we the public would like to see some nice crisp and clear pictures of these criminals.

Jamesaust 12 years ago

"I had no idea it was going to be this kind of a problem."

This surely is one of the more stupid comments of 2005 in the LJW (a banner year). Graffiti on a building on the 700 block of N.H. is about as predictable as taxes.

conservativepunker 12 years ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

Calliope877 12 years ago

I hope downtown Lawrence won't end up looking like downtown KC. The graffiti there is hideous.

pylon25 12 years ago

Sandman: Are you serious? It's absurd to think that he should be responsible for peoples actions outside of his club. Once its off his property, he can't and shouldn't be held liable.

Sandman 12 years ago

So if I put out a ton of dog food in my yard, I'm not responsible for the damage the dogs do to my neighbors yard?

monkeywrench1969 12 years ago

Also you attract different organisms with different types of food. If you want birds throw out seed, if you want dogs throw out meat...

If you want to make money in a bar play hip hop but be ready to see the incidents of crimes go up. How many fights, shootings, stabbings etc occured at the American Music Awards, Academy Awards, Peoples Choice Awards compared to the The Source Music Awards or other Hip Hop Related music awards shows.

gccs14r 12 years ago

lonesome_breeze thinks the LJW is a liberal paper. That's almost funny.

howrevolting 12 years ago

heck yes! that building sucks. they're luxury condos. of course they're gonna get tagged. and rightly so. i miss the big open lot that used to be there. the graffiti looks awesome. i'm glad someone had the rocks to get it done. the sod ripping was a cool idea. that building is ugly and dumb. almost as dumb as the idea of banning spray paint.

lonesome_breeze 12 years ago

Sandman..Usually I think your posts are right on the money.....but I can spot tagger art and that is what was sprayed on the Hobbs Loft....I don't think "taggers" are part of the problems associated with the hip-hop crowd at "The Last Call". I'm not giving Steffes a pass for the problems his bar does cause in the area, and in Lawrence in general. I just don't think they are related to this vandalism. I think taggers are more likely to hang out with the rest of the mental giants at "The Replay" or at the video arcade if they still existed,or just walking around on Mass. Steet wearing a black trench coat. Monkey wrench...great point about the violence at the hip-hop awards shows.

monkeywrench1969 12 years ago

PErsonally I would have to think the taggers are more likely to be part of the group who were up in the tree prior to the lofts going in. And few of those folks are Replay patrons.

wonderhorse 12 years ago


"and rightly so."

Why is it OK to destroy somebody else's belongings? If it were your car, would that be OK?

lonesome_breeze 12 years ago know better then that. The treehuuggers dont want to ruin the air with the effects of aerosol.

wonderhorse 12 years ago


Sorry, I got overwrought. It won't happen again, probably,....

lunacydetector 12 years ago

? i thought the city fined people who didn't remove graffitti quick enough?

the county jail used to send out prisoners to clean graffitti, free of charge. there is a clear solution that can be applied to a building that will allow a power washer to blast off graffitti without the use of solvents. they use it back east on some of the bigger bridges -though it will leave the treated area shiny.

yourworstnightmare 12 years ago

The graffiti on the new Hobbs Taylor building brought a slight smile to my face, not because of the incident itself but because of the consistency of human nature.

It is comforting to know that humans will generally behave in a certain way when confronted with a certain situation (e.g. spraying graffiti on a new building).

It seems ridiculous that this wasn't anticipated and that there is shock and horror about how someone could do this.

One could argue that the graffiti gives the building "urban flair", something that the builders were trying to capture.

yourworstnightmare 12 years ago

I have noticed a large upsurge in graffiti downtown since Signs of Life bookstore opened.

It's likely not Last Call or Replay patrons, as these establishments have been around since before the uptick in graffiti. Rather, the correlation is to Signs of Life patrons.

norm 12 years ago

This "crime" is ever so humorous! Isn't it part of Lawrence "quaintness" and an aspect of "downtown" to have all this fun and merriment? Did the buyers of the rich man condo's think that their purchase was somehow going to change what "downtown" Lawrence is really all about....especially in the dead of night? Did the builders actually think that the building would not get "tagged" prior to building and have a fast, "quick fix" solution for the wealthy living in the thing?

I, for one, am most amused by this "problem"!

Richard Heckler 12 years ago

The hidden costs of growth...a little more crime.

norm 12 years ago


I never quite understand what you're posting about, ever, and you post a lot. I'm not referring to growth in any fashion; I'm referring to our community realizing that "downtown" is not Manhattan; or Amsterdam; or Chicago; or any major neato place. It's friggin Lawrence, Kansas and will always be.

Eventually, "downtown" will revert back to what it once was for this place: A place for the average Joe and Jane instead of the facade it currently is wearing.

a_new_voice 12 years ago

So...after the reading these posts I have decided that this is the work of either patrons of the Replay, Last Call, or Signs of Life. This, I believe is how witch burning began.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 12 years ago

And none of these witches need share the same religion. Now that's diversity!

Richard Heckler 12 years ago

Norm, "Eventually, "downtown" will revert back to what it once was for this place: A place for the average Joe and Jane instead of the facade it currently is wearing."

We can only hope you are correct.

Although I do like the concept of building up instead of out or better yet no more houses.

hubcap 12 years ago

That False God Graven Image on the Sandbar is to blame! Wake up! Tiki wilt be thou doom!

monkeywrench1969 12 years ago


If you don't remember many of hte banners slogans on signs and on the ground around the tent city at the time of the Tree incident used spray paint. Also lots of the anti capitalist grafitii around town which were part of the "tree hugger" movement have been done with spray paint. Spray paint is a staple in the anti- everything movement or haven't you read eco-defense by Dave Foreman

coolmom 12 years ago

the developer did it in the den after drinks at the replay and last call and sniffing incense at the signs of life? its a conspiracey...hehee...or maybe unsupervised kids out of school and bored...hum...

classclown 12 years ago

Colonel Mustard in the library with the candlestick.

calieerin 12 years ago

Does anyone know about the Rusk name in the graffiti? I saw something about it in Germany. Didn't know if it had any form of meaning. What's funny is I think these are young children. Children who are doing it, just to do it. A corporate building or a recording studio. It's funny that an "artist" would tag on an artist. Let's have a meaning hear children, if you are trying to make a point make it. By the way, your so called art is boring. LAC has classes.

hotmama1 11 years, 10 months ago

I think it serves the Harris's right! If only the community knew how much Bo has stolen from others, it might happen more often. shame on Harris, keep to building houses, not beer plants. Harris acuses alot of people of wrong doings, and I think they're getting what they deserve!

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