Racy Billboard Above River North Portillo's Removed

By Ted Cox and Lizzie Schiffman Tufano  on February 19, 2013 5:22pm  | Updated on February 20, 2013 8:55am

 No longer on display: the adult-themed billboard above Clark and Ontario streets.
No longer on display: the adult-themed billboard above Clark and Ontario streets.
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DNAinfo/Ted Cox

CITY HALL — A controversial River North billboard has been removed at the request of Ald. Brendan Reilly (42nd).

"It was a very basic conversation," Reilly said Tuesday. "I said I can't make him take it down, but I'd appreciate it if you'd be a good neighbor."

The billboard, which advertised an adult-dating website, read: "Because the best job is a b--w job." It was above the Portillo's hot dog stand at Clark and Ontario streets and was in full view of the entry to the Rainforest Cafe. Reilly said he cited the concerns of "young families" in talking with the billboard owner, Urban Core Outdoor.

"It was a simple request that, thankfully, the owner granted," Reilly said. He added that he believed the adult-dating site had been compensated for the early removal of the ad.

Reilly wasn't the only one to voice his displeasure with the ad.

River North Residents Association President Mike Riordan said he contacted Urban Core Outdoor about the "tasteless advertising" but never heard back. 

"People that have seen it found it to be vulgar and demeaning, but there has been no large-scale outrage registered with us," he wrote in an email. "We will continue to advocate strongly with Urban Core Outdoor to embrace higher standards."

Association Vice President Paulette Rodriguez said she was "shocked" by the billboard's message, which she called "horrible" and "inappropriate." 

 

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