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Exclusive: Death Knell for Advertecture?

Earlier this week, a Curbed reader emailed, "Scaffolding came crashing down last weekend at Prince and Lafayette Streets. This scaffolding has been up for a long time but no construction work ever happens. Why? The landlord collects big revenue from the billboard while blocking his tenants storefronts. How do we stop this?"

Unbelievably, it seems the city may finally be, uh, "doing something." A Curbed tipster emailed us just minutes ago: "I work for an outdoor advertising firm based in New York. Our main business is construction site poster advertising - which, of course, is illegal. This hasn't been a problem for decades. DOB and DOT have turned a blind eye to construction site wildposting for years, until yesterday."

Ahead: the possible death of advertecture, explained.

The complete tipster's email:

I work for an outdoor advertising firm based in New York. Our main business is construction site poster advertising - which, of course, is illegal. This hasn't been a problem for decades. DOB and DOT have turned a blind eye to construction site wildposting for years, until yesterday. A prominent scaffolding/shed company with whom we have been negotiating a long term relationship forwarded us a fax they received from DOT, a printout of the nyc.gov web page delineating the illegality of scaffolding, shed, and construction fence advertising (image, top). A gentle reminder, so to speak. The scaffolding company backed out of the deal. This follows on the heels of word I received last week from yet another scaffolding firm that in the wake of those vinyl-wrapped (Helio) scaffoldings falling down over the Halloween weekend, that the city was dealing with that problem by no longer issuing permits for scaffolds with parapets (the vertical, ad-supporting portion) of more than 4' in height. This effectively kills vinyl wrap advertising.

I have had two deals fall through with developers in the last two weeks for the same reason - J. Stern Construction and Douglaston Development were both informed that companies working with poster advertisers would find their transportation permit applications denied.

The fax my scaffolding company received from DOT is attached. Note the handwritten ATTN: at the top. Whoever sent it didn't want to waste time generating individual fax cover letters, they just sent that to "All shed and scaffolding companies" in the city as fast as humanly possible.

Could it be that our advertecture adventure, which began when the Flatiron Building cozied up to H&M, and played on through the summer of our discontent, could be coming to an end? Fear not, we'll always have advertecture. Though perhaps not on scaffolding anymore.
· BREAKING: When Advertecture Attacks! [Curbed]
· Curbed Advertecture Corps: We Have a Winner! [Curbed]
· Trend Alert: Advertecture at Flatiron Building [Curbed]