Graffiti Prevention and Removal

Denver Partners Against Graffiti

Graffiti Prevention and Removal

Denver Partners Against Graffiti provides free graffiti removal assistance on business and residential properties within the City & County of Denver. Our crews remove graffiti using current equipment and graffiti removal methods (painting, hand cleaning or power washing).   If there is graffiti on your property or in your neighborhood, please report it online or by calling 311 so that our graffiti crews can remove it.

Denver Partners Against Graffiti provides free graffiti removal assistance on business and residential properties within the City & County of Denver. Our crews remove graffiti using current equipment and graffiti removal methods (painting, hand cleaning or power washing).

Denver Partners Against Graffiti offers:

  • FREE graffiti removal supplies for citizens to remove graffiti from their property.
  • FREE graffiti removal supplies for citizens to remove graffiti in their community.
  • Assistance in organizing community graffiti cleanups.
  • Speakers for school, business, community and civic groups.
  • A variety of volunteer opportunities to keep our communities graffiti free.

Graffiti Prevention

An ounce of prevention is worth more than a gallon of cover-up paint. Here are three tips that can help prevent graffiti on your property:

  1. Quick removal: The best prevention is the quick removal of tags or graffiti, since the primary goal of graffiti vandals is for their "work" to be seen. If graffiti is removed quickly, there's less payoff for the risk and work involved. Call 311 to order free supplies to remove graffiti from your property.
  2. Make your property less inviting for tagging: By installing motion-sensing lights and removing shrubs or bushes that conceal graffiti vandalism in progress, thereby making your property less appealing.
  3. Make it difficult and unappealing: Repair broken fences and remove any objects that could make it easy to gain entry to your property. Install low, dense, thorny bushes around walls to make it difficult to get in close enough to tag. Plant ivy or other wall-climbing plants to make the "blank canvas" of your wall less appealing.

About Tagging

There are several kinds of graffiti and the term refers to several forms of vandalism, from large spray paint murals (about 5% of graffiti nationally) to "tagging," or quick scrawls of a name using a spray can, marker or etching implement (about 80% of graffiti nationally). 

image of spray paint can and hand with words STOP in frontTagging is the quickest, easiest, most pervasive and most expensive form of graffiti vandalism, and is like logo placement or brand advertising. The primary goal of tagging is to advertise the vandal's "tag" (or street name) and "crew" (tagging group or gang set) and get recognition from others for prominent placement of tags throughout the city. A tag in a location is a challenge or an invitation for another tagger to tag the same spot, either challenging the original tagger's ownership of the spot or reinforcing that ownership. In some cases, tagging is gang-related and marks a gang's territory, but often is solely for self-promotion. Taggers who cover a lot of territory or place tags in risky, high visibility locations get more recognition for their efforts. 

What does this mean for you?

  • Denver Police track specific tags and crews, so reporting graffiti to the police is an important first step to long-term graffiti prevention. 
  • Clean-up is key. By removing the tags as quickly as possible, you not only make your location less desirable for new taggers but because the tag isn't there long enough to be seen, the original tagger will be less likely to hit the same spot again.
  • Don't give them the publicity they desire. Don't post photos or videos of graffiti, and don't allow the media to display any graffiti on your property. The publication of a tag gives the tagger a huge reward for his vandalism.

Remove Graffiti Yourself

Paint Banks 

You can help keep Denver graffiti free by picking up materials from a paint bank and covering graffiti vandalism when you see it. If the graffiti is on private property, permission must be granted from the owner/tenant prior to removal. The quicker graffiti is removed or covered, the less likely it is to return.

A paint bank is a location where citizens can pick up paint and materials at no charge to cover graffiti in Denver. Paint is available in seven standard colors and is packaged in 1 gallon containers.

Available paint colors are: grey, white, brick red, yellow beige (pale yellow), tobacco brown (warm brown), musket brown (dark brown) and viaduct beige (tan).

Ask about other graffiti removal supplies used to clean items such as poles, signs and traffic control boxes.

Call 311 (720-913-1311) to order paint and to make arrangements for pick up, or visit one of the participating paint banks in your community.

When picking up paint you must show proof of Denver residency.