U.S. 281 bridge graffiti tagged for cleanup by TxDOT at estimated cost of $2,000

STAFF WRITER CONNIE SWINNEY

Graffiti on the U.S. 281 bridge over Lake Marble Falls has joined a list of cleanup projects slated for June to be done by Texas Department of Transportation contractors. Courtesy photo

Graffiti on the U.S. 281 bridge over Lake Marble Falls has joined a list of cleanup projects slated for June to be done by Texas Department of Transportation contractors. Courtesy photo

MARBLE FALLS — Texas Department of Transportation officials have targeted an eyesore on the U.S. 281 bridge over Lake Marble Falls for a cleanup project in June.

TxDOT has ordered “a graffiti removal application” for a segment of the bridge that was vandalized sometime possibly in May.

Symbols, numbers, and phrases such as “Life’s A Gamble” and “Chillin Like a Villain” mar a spot on the south-end abutment of the bridge.

A paint removal chemical is expected to arrive sometime after the first week of June.

“Either we paint over the graffiti with a heavy coverup paint, blast (it) with high-pressure water, or, in some situations … use a chemical removal,’’ TxDOT spokeswoman Diann Hodges said in a statement. “If it doesn’t work to remove the graffiti, it will have to be painted over and crews will need to match the color.”

The state contracts for graffiti removal at a cost of $3.50 per square foot.  The estimated cleanup cost for the bridge is $2,000.

Officials said they would possibly reach out to local police to determine if a report of the vandalism was made for clues to track down suspects and hold them accountable.

“If we are fortunate enough to have information from police departments on the person(s) who did the damage, we will make attempts to submit damage claims to recover costs incurred,” Hodges stated. “Unfortunately, when it comes to graffiti, (catching the culprit) is very rare.”

connie@thepicayune.com

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