David Bowie Fans Rename Street Sign, City Totally Cool With It
— KVUE News (@KVUE) January 13, 2016
Seems like just about everyone is getting in on David Bowie tributes the past couple days. And their support is coming from some unlikely places — like the city officials in Austin, who are totally cool with a street sign that was altered to pay tribute to the late legend overnight.
Austin 360 reports that Bowie Street in that city recently went through an unplanned renaming, when one of its street signs was replaced with a David Bowie Street one. (You can see the sign in the above tweet from KVUE News.) Nobody is sure who’s responsible for the switch, but the sign is located near the South by Southwest offices in downtown Austin, so suspects are most likely in the dozens.
Still, city officials said in a statement that they’ll leave the sign up with its new name until next week:
“The Austin Transportation Department has been notified that someone got creative with the street sign at Bowie and 5th Streets, changing the sign to read “David Bowie” in memory of the musician and pop-culture icon. We appreciate Austin’s reputation as the Live Music Capital of the World and recognize David Bowie for all he did for the music industry and more. To this end, we will leave the sign up until Tuesday, January 19, so our community can enjoy the makeshift memorial a few days longer. At that time we will have to replace it with the real street name sign.”
But as Austin 360 notes, whoever is responsible for the new sign isn’t off the hook yet. He or she could be charged with theft or criminal mischief, both of which are misdemeanors, depending on how cool city officials will still be once they put the old sign back up.
Bowie died on Jan. 10 after battling cancer for 18 months. The news came as a shock to fans, who were just celebrating the singer’s 69th birthday and the release of his 25th album, Blackstar, only two days before. His death has spurred interest in both Bowie’s back catalog and his new record, which most likely will debut at No. 1 next week, giving him the first-ever chart-topping LP of his career.
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