Graffiti strikes MARC

By Zac Farber

A rash of neighborhood graffiti spread over campus in late January, tagging the north, east and west sides of the Macalester Athletic and Recreation Center with a graffiti tag common in the area, “mase.” McGough, the MARC construction contractor, removed the graffiti and added a nighttime security guard to protect against further acts of vandalism.McGough, not Macalester, paid for the removal of the graffiti and will pay for an American Security guard; Macalester paid a lump sum to McGough for the construction of the MARC and the contractor has agreed to pay for all of the smaller projects associated with the construction.

McGough’s security guard will work from 3 p.m. to 7 a.m. on weekdays and 24 hours on weekends, said Terry Gorman, assistant director of facilities management. This will supplement Macalester’s regular contingent of seven security guards.

McGough planned to hire security at some stage of the project, Gorman said. But the graffiti incident increased the urgency of protecting the site.

But graffiti cannot be completely thwarted through additional or more vigilant security, Gorman said.

“We’ve alerted the security officers, but it’s difficult,” he said. “Somebody can do that in just a second and then sprint.”

“It’s unfortunate people have to think that the way to get a statement out is to spray-paint a building,” Gorman said.