From city council members to residents to tourists, PARKatlanta is certainly not short on detractors.
Now, the private company, which is contracted to provide parking enforcement for the city of Atlanta, can add another group the list: Anarchists.
A self-described anarchist group with "a profound hatred of the privatized parking enforcement in Atlanta" hit a string of parking meters along Edgewood Avenue Sunday, rendering 45 of them inoperable along a stretch of the road that spans from the Sweet Auburn district to Downtown.
The group used industrial epoxy to prevent motorists from putting money into the meters' coin slots.
On Tuesday, the group struck again, hanging a banner on the Freedom Parkway overpass in Old Fourth Ward that read: For the silent ones <3/F*** grand juries.
It said the acts are to show solidarity with fellow anarchists in Portland, Ore. and Seattle and Olympia, Wash. in the wake of a reported grand jury investigation in Seattle.
The Seattle Times reported the grand jury is looking into May Day-related vandalism in the Pacific Northwest.
"This is just a small gesture of solidarity with comrades in Portland, Seattle, and Olympia who are resisting the grand jury which released 6 subpoenas late last month," the group wrote in an e-mail to East Atlanta Patch.
"We know that the point of these hearings is to stultify the rebellion of those in the Pacific-Northwest who have helped to escalate the unending social war of which we are all apart. All across the country — in San Francisco, Oakland, New York, East St. Louis, the Twin Cities, Seattle, and elsewhere — anarchists have decided to meet this repression with further attacks against the dominant social order. We hope that our humble act warms the hearts of all who resist."
On its Say Nothing blog, the group says it has attacked courthouses in Kirkland, Wash. and East St. Louis, Ill., a police recruitment center in Oakland, Calif., and a number of banner drops in several cities.
Contacted Monday afternoon, Benita Hardy, PARKatlanta's project program officer, said she was unaware of any widespread damage to the meters on Edgewood and did not have an immediate comment.
An Atlanta Police Department spokesman said the agency had not been officially notified of the vandalism — the meters are owned by PARKatlanta — but added such property crimes are taken seriously.
"The destruction of property is a crime and if we are able to find those responsible they will face criminal charges," APD spokesman Carlos Campos said. "We welcome anyone with information to contact the Atlanta Police Department - or Crime Stoppers Atlanta’s tip line if they wish to remain anonymous."
Creative Loafing reported that while the meters are offline, PARKatlanta will not ticket motorists who park their vehicles at the broken meters.