Wall will enclose 90 percent of campus
A wall that will shut off “unfettered access” to outsides and encircle 90 percent of the campus will go up soon at a Baltimore historically black college.
The announcement by Morgan State University on Tuesday came after a shooting Oct. 3 “left five people injured during homecoming festivities,” as reported by Fox 5. The suspects reportedly did not intend to target the five injured Morgan State students. Both suspects are black.
“We’re doing this, let me be clear, not to keep out our neighbors and our community writ large; we are doing it to keep out the bad actors,” President David Wilson said during a town hall meeting Tuesday.
“The wall would extend existing barriers by about 8,000 feet (2,400 meters) to encircle 90% of campus and effectively ‘eliminate unfettered access,’” Fox 5 reported, quoting President Wilson.
Other upgrades were underway and are being accelerated, officials said.
Fox 5 reported:
University officials said significant security upgrades were underway before the shooting, but they’re now moving forward with more urgency. In addition to the wall, other potential upgrades include installing more metal detectors in campus buildings, exploring weapons detection technology, increasing police patrols and building additional security guard booths. Wilson said the anticipated total cost is more than $22 million.
While the university is now building walls to keep some outsiders from entering the facility, it previously celebrated the tearing down of a wall once meant to divide the black university from the surrounding white neighbors.
“The wall separated students from the community and the shopping plaza,” WMAR 2 reported in April. “It feels almost like…poetic justice. I feel like the literal and physical wall being put up to prevent Black people from shopping here and thriving here is coming down,” a local business owner said at the time.”
IMAGE: WBAL-11 TV