Good Question: What's being done about graffiti on I-590?

April 01, 2019 10:28 AM

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) -- Have you been on I-590 in the suburbs lately? You may have noticed something different and it's not a good sign.

Pat Taney was asked to look into it for this week's Good Question report.


Over the past few months, graffiti artists have been tagging highway sound barriers in the suburbs.

We were asked what's being done to stop it.

If you take a stroll down 590 in Brighton near the Rochester city line, whether north or southbound, you'll see it and so do state highway officials.

"We have noticed some graffiti on the sound barriers there," said Jordan Guerrein, NYS Department of Transportation spokesperson. 

It started in a few spots and then appeared to grow over the past several months.

We were asked two questions. 

First, what's the state doing about it?

"We tackle graffiti on a case-by-case basis whether it's on our bridges or on our sound walls. We have an anti-graffiti paint that we use to paint over it," Guerrein said.

That will likely be done this spring.

And second, can't traffic cameras catch the taggers in action?

"We have cameras on the highway system but they're really for just real-time traffic monitoring. We don't have them zoomed into the concrete walls to catch these people," he added.

Catching taggers is tough work. They're fast and work at night.

Some so-called works of art are taken care of quicker than others.

"If there is an obscene or offensive remark we will remove that right away," Guerrein said.

In Brighton, there is nothing too obscene, but it will tie up highway crews this spring who should be fixing roads, not covering up graffiti.

"It is, unfortunately, something we have to deal with."

News10NBC also reached out to state police to see if they've arrested or ticketed anyone this year for defacing public property. We were told none have been issued so far but they will monitor it.

If you have a question you'd like answered, send Pat an email to


Pat Taney

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