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LETTER TO THE EDITOR: More public art, less advertising

AC Transit seems to be shrink-wrapping (from head to toe) more buses
with commercial advertising lately, and I'm told they haven't gotten
many complaints. Am I the only one who shudders every time one of those
diesel billboards lurches by?

If you want to encourage more people to use public transit, uglier buses
aren't much of an incentive. Those full-body advertising wraps (they
even cover the windows) are more likely to repel than attract new
riders. We need to make our urban environment *more*--not
less--attractive for pedestrians, transit users, and passersby so that
people will enjoy being out and about in the public realm. Find another
way to raise money for transit, and nix the hideous ads.

In El Cerrito, we've started a project to turn all our city's bus
benches into art benches, thus "advertising" the talents of our local
artists and community groups and giving bus riders something to smile
about. That's the kind of advertising I hope to see more of around
here. When we're done with the benches, maybe we'll start working on
the buses.

Lori Dair
El Cerrito Art Bench Project

Run dates: 2000-07-02 - 2000-07-20

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