Mural to Replace Graffiti on Top of Building Near 7 Train

By Jeanmarie Evelly on June 19, 2014 7:05am 

 7Train Murals will paint a wall on the rooftop of Sunnyside Community Services starting on Thursday.
7Train Murals will paint a wall on the rooftop of Sunnyside Community Services starting on Thursday.
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Mark Salinas

SUNNYSIDE — Riders on the 7 train in Sunnyside will be getting a brush with art.

7Train Murals, a community group that aims to beautify graffiti-plagued areas in neighborhoods served by the 7 train, is painting a new mural Thursday on the rooftop of Sunnyside Community Services.

The mural will show a locomotive train with the word "Sunnyside" painted in bright shades of yellow and orange. It will be visible to 7 train riders traveling between the 33rd and 40th Street stations.

"It has a history of vandalism," 7Train Murals founder Mark Salinas said of the 1,000-square-foot rooftop wall on 39th Street, near Queens Boulevard, which is currently covered in graffiti tags.

"It's visual litter. It's depressing to see everyday."

Salinas will be painting the mural over the course of four days starting Thursday, with the help of volunteers from Sunnyside Community Services, the Sunnyside/Woodside Boys and Girls Club and Trinity Grace Church in Long Island City.

The project is being funded by a grant from the Citizens Committee for New York City.

This is the second mural that Salinas, an artist and Sunnyside resident, has organized in the neighborhood. 

Last year, he and volunteers painted a brick wall at the corner of 48th Avenue and 42nd Street with a bright yellow mural with the words "Rise-N-Shine."

Both murals so far have been in Sunnyside, though Salinas said he hopes to expand his reach to other Queens neighborhoods.

"It's still in its early stages," he said. "[But] down the road I would love to see this turn into an organization that does two or three murals annually, all along the 7 train, turning over vandalized areas into an opportunity where the community can come and neighbors can network and actively participate in making a change."

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