10.4.2018

Billboard at the Ben Franklin Bridge

By David Brownlee

Image Credit: Delaware River Port Authority

October 3, 2018

 

Mayor Francisco Moran

City Hall, Fourth Floor

520 Market Street

Camden, New Jersey 08101

 

Dear Mayor Moran:

 

I write on behalf of the Design Advocacy Group to urge you to veto the gigantic billboard that is proposed to be located on the north side of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge in Camden. We believe, and we have consistently argued, that public streets, parks, and other shared spaces are among our most valuable resources, and we are impoverished when they are not protected.

 

The proposed billboard will impose its bright digital display on a Camden neighborhood, on Camden’s attractive waterfront park system, and on the many commuters who traverse Camden every day.  For all of these people, Camden will be redefined as an advertising zone—not as a place to live, play, and travel.  Drivers may even be endangered by the billboard’s distraction as they traverse a complex traffic area.

 

We recognize and celebrate the philanthropic intention that accompanies this proposal.  However, we believe that people of good will can support Camden’s resurgence without making this imposition on the public realm.

 

 

Sincerely,

 

David B. Brownlee, PhD, FSAH

Co Vice Chair, Design Advocacy Group