There is a theory in social work known as the “broken window theory.” You can take a tenement building and pour money into further police patrols. Or you can fix all the broken windows. The theory is, that if you pour the money into just fixing the broken windows, people will start to take pride in their surroundings and will prevent crime on their own.
Consider as an example Philadelphia’s Mural Arts Program. The New York Times recently published an article in which it discussed the thrust of the program, and its many successes. Philadelphia has over 2,800 murals throughout its diverse neighborhoods. In the article, one resident is quoted as saying that with the advent of the murals, that the drug dealers have disappeared and there is no graffiti.
If you’re one of our Philadelphia corporate housing clients, you could take a Mural Arts Tour on one of the trolley cars. The cost is $25 for adults, $23 for seniors 65 and older, $15 for children 3-10, and free for children under 2, and the tour lasts about two hours.