Thanks to actions like large-scale litter removal efforts and lower incidences of graffiti and illegal signs, Keep Akron Beautiful (KAB) recently rated all of Akron’s Wards with positive marks in its Community Appearance Index.
Earlier this month, the organization conducted the index, which is a tool designed by Keep America Beautiful to visually assess the overall appearance of communities through indicators such as litter, illegal signs and graffiti. A team of community, business, and government representatives conducted the visual analysis using a scoring system with choices ranging from 1-4, with “1” being minimal or no litter to “4” being extremely littered.
The Litter Index for the city of Akron rated 1.29. Temporary Illegal Signage Index rated a 1.46, reflecting an average of fewer than five signs illegally placed on public land in any one ward, and the Graffiti Index rated a 1.09. A 2 graffiti rating would mean 1 to 2 small tags per ward, no larger than 6 feet by 6 feet and could be cleaned up by 1 to 2 people. While all 10 wards scored an average number less than 2, Ward 1 and Ward 6 had the lowest average number of litter.
This year the survey team included: Keep Akron Beautiful staff member Cindy Pantea; KAB Emeritus Board Member Sue Kruder; community volunteer Anne Hubiak; city of Akron Sanitation employees Dan Dempsey and Tad Fryberger; and Keep Akron Beautiful Intern Johanna Barnowski.
KAB CEO Jacqui Flaherty-Ricchiuti commented, “Keep Akron Beautiful staff and community volunteers have removed more than 20 tons of litter from public spaces in the city since the beginning of the year. The Community Appearance Index statistics is not only a reflection of the work of those affiliated with our agency, including staff, volunteers and community service volunteers, but proves that working to eliminate litter helps slow trash accumulation and make people think twice about purposeful littering.”
The team also surveyed five land uses for the appearance of litter during the windshield survey: commercial, industrial, educational, recreational and residential. This year the residential areas were more littered than the other four land uses while overall, the educational and commercial areas in Akron appeared to be the most litter-free.
Keep Akron Beautiful improves Akron’s quality of life through beautification and responsible environmental management. Visit www.keepakronbeautiful.org
Keep America Beautiful, Inc., established in 1953, is the nation’s largest volunteer-based community action and education organization. With a network of nearly 1,000 affiliate and participating organizations, Keep America Beautiful forms public-private partnerships and programs that engage individuals to take greater responsibility for improving their community’s environment. To learn more, visit www.kab.org.