Art project aims to restore pride in Dayton neighborhood

4:54 p.m Sunday, Oct. 29, 2017 Local
The East End Community Center in Dayton is teaming with the Dayton Art Society to bring artwork to create to help beautify the surrounding area. MALIK PERKINS/STAFF

An organization is teaming up with local artists to give an East Dayton neighborhood a make over.

The East End Community Center wants to paint more artwork on neighborhood buildings to help enhance the area.

“This would dress it up. It would make the neighborhood look brand new,” said resident Claire Aiello.

Aiello said she has lived in the Twin Towers neighborhood her entire life. Before drugs and crime hit, the neighborhood looked very different, she said.

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“It was beautiful back then, gorgeous back then,” Aiello said. “Now this area has all gone down.”

In an effort to restore this neighborhood, the East End Community Center is teaming up with the Dayton Art Society to create artwork throughout the area and help restore a sense of pride.

Vandalism and graffiti have been on the rise in recent years, said Danielle Weickert, an organizer at East End Community Center. She said she hopes this project will change that.

“We were seeing different tagging throughout the neighborhood,” Weickert said. “Removing that tagging is always a good first step. But being able to put up something beautiful and have something their really proud of deters that tagging.”

The project will be paid for with a $30,000 grant from the Ohio Capital Impact Corp.

The money will be used to hire artists from the Dayton Art Society to paint other buildings.

Some examples of their artwork can be seen at the Corner Cupboard on Xenia Avenue, and there’s a memorial painted near the East End Community Center.

Residents hope the art encourages people to stop destroying the area.

“Art is a big part of it. We need that to inspire people to take care of their places,” said Aiello.

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