We worked in pairs to write email letters to each alderman in Calgary, requesting information about the graffiti problem in our city. Below is an example of a letter.

Dear Alderman Larocque,

We are grade 6 students studying local government through graffiti. We are comparing the graffiti problem in the wards in Calgary. Our class will also be colour coding the extent of the graffiti problem in each ward on a large map of Calgary. We would appreciate if you could answer the following questions:

  1. Is graffiti a problem in Ward 3? (Please use a scale of 1-10, 10 being the worst.)
  2. How much money does Ward 3 spend on removing graffiti every year?
  3. What is your opinion on graffiti? Art, crime or both?
  4. What type of graffiti is most common in your ward?
  5. How many graffers do you catch each year?
  6. Have you heard of Urban Youth Worx? What do you think of it?

Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to answer our questions. Your information is greatly appreciated.


Gillian D. and Morgan T.

Here is part of the response we received from Karen Hirl of the City of Calgary on February 7, 2006.

Is there a problem with graffiti in Calgary?

Graffiti is a growing problem in all areas of the city. Graffiti can be found throughout the entire city but the areas most affected are in the downtown core and surrounding inner city communities.

A sample of four City of Calgary wards, two of which are inner city and two of which fall in the outlying areas demonstrates the concentration of graffiti in the higher populated regions of Calgary. This supports the primary reason why people do graffiti which is for "recognition". The more people that can see it the more likely it is going to occur in higher traffic areas. The sample gives a comparison for the outer city wards of Ward 2 at 718 graffiti tags and Ward 14 at 587 graffiti tags, compared to inner city Ward 7 at 6759 graffiti tags and Ward 8 at 9758 graffiti tags.



Copyright © 2006 Kershaw, Watt and students