Graffiti Pier, the popular hot spot for graffiti artists, fisherman and picnickers has been shut down by Philadelphia Police following a rise in crime and safety concerns.
The popular Pier 124, located along the Delaware River, was once in operation prior to 1991 as a place where coal was transferred. While the land is still owned by Conrail, the place has since been locked and abandoned. For years, many have jumped the gates using the place as a make-shift park.
With an increase in visitors as the years ticked on, Conrail has reached out to Captain Krista Dahl-Campbell of the 26th district with concerns over the recent car burglaries in the area as well as reported rapes and robberies at Graffiti Pier.
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“I understand that people love the space and I understand why they want to utilize it,” Dahl-Campbell said. “But there is no lighting and it's on private property that is not patrolled by us. It's not an area that's looked after.”
Since the shut-down of Graffiti Pier some of the public feel that the city should turn secure the area and turn it into an official park to preserve both the art and the space where many go to fish, socialize and enjoy some down time.
According to Courier Post, a spokesman for Conrail has since issued a statement in regards to the future of Graffiti Pier.
“Conrail's history with Philadelphia dates back over 100 years to the Reading Railroad. We are committed to this city and plan on being a part of the community for at least another 100 years,” Conrail vice president of corporate development Jonathan Broder said. “Right now, we're exploring exactly what that means and are considering several options.”
Art Blogger Conrad Benner believes it would be a mistake if the City of Philadelphia did not transform Graffiti Pier into an official park.
“That would be a painful loss not only to the people and communities that have made Graffiti Pier what it is but to Philadelphia as a whole.”