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Graffiti Cleanup Planned For South Bay Freeway Overpasses

SAN JOSE — For South Bay drivers disgusted by graffiti-covered overpasses and tagged train trestles, something is finally being done. Next week Caltrans, San Jose and Union Pacific workers will combine to scrub the train crossing over Highway 101 near 13th Street and repaint it. A few days later, the same cleanup will be performed on the 101-McKee Road bridge and soon after on the Bird Avenue crossing over I-280 west of downtown San Jose, where a large yellow “RIP TOMMY” tag has been up for more than two months.

“I would love that (to be cleaned up),” said Loui Tucker of San Jose, an Adopt-A-Highway organizer on a stretch of I-280 east of Highway 17. “Of course, if they are going to clean off the tags, they have to do something to prevent taggers from getting up there again.”

That’s the plan. Barriers have recently been installed both on and under the overpasses to make it more difficult to reach, and fences have been raised.

“Whether that works, time will tell,” said Suzanne Wolf, deputy director of the city’s parks and recreation department. “But we’re working toward a long-term rather than just an immediate fix.”

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