Free Newspaper Racks

gcotter's picture

I live in the mission and it seems that every corner has those free newspaper racks.  The really nice ones that are on Mission Street and maintained by the city are fine.  They are clean and neat.  But on other streets they are not the city owned racks but newspaper owned racks and they are generally an unsightly mess and frequently empty or not used.  The real problem is that they attract graffiti - both painted and gummed labels.  I finally called 311 about my corner where their were five racks.  Examiner, SF weekly,  El Bohemio, Fronteras, and Bay Guardian.  It took a few weeks but now all five have been refurbished.  Yet, even though the owners cleaned them up, the racks don't seem to be used.  I just went out and checked and only the Bay Guardian had newspapers in it - the other four were empty.

Well, I can't complain for now - after all, I wanted the graffiti removed and it was.  But today when I was walking on 24th Street I saw several corners with the same racks but covered with graffiti.  Sigh.  Does this mean that we have to continually call 311 so that newspaper racks can be cleaned up?  Shouldn't they be prohibited unless they are always maintained?  And what does it say about the owners of the papers that they don't keep the racks clean?  Granted these papers are freebees, but the publishers must make some money.

Anyone have any ideas on this subject?

ExcelsiorMom's picture

Great point.  I know the

Great point.  I know the racks are still around, but I thought all the racks were turning into those green city-owned ones?  I'm assuming it is a budget issue.  I'd support something to get the racks cleaned up.

We still have the ugly racks in front of the Glen Park BART station. 

km123's picture


I'm over in the financial district and there are the green ones everywhere. Yet someone can be seen cleaning/wiping each one a couple times a week. We need more jobs for folks in the city... Don't we have a beautification committee or something? Doesn't this seem win-win?

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