Surrey rainbow crosswalk defaced with white paint
'People have to destroy something that's so pretty. It took a lot of money and work'
Surrey RCMP are investigating after a rainbow crosswalk was defaced on Sunday.
White paint was splattered on the crosswalk at Old Yale Road and University Drive, just 10 days after it was installed.
RCMP say they believe it was vandalism and are hoping to find the suspect using footage from closed-circuit cameras.
"It's very disappointing," spokesperson Cpl. Elenore Sturko said.
A city crew was dispatched Monday morning to remove the paint using high-pressure steam.
Ray Kerr, the city's manager of engineering operations, said he expected the crew would finish by the end of the day.
Kerr said the crew typically does graffiti removal, so the cleanup came at no extra cost.
One of the crew members, David Marr, said passersby had approached him throughout the morning.
"People are asking why we're cleaning the rainbow," he said. "I think they're against it. My response is you should have an open mind."
'They ruined it'
Other observers had mixed reactions.
"I didn't quite like it much, but we accept it," said Therese Schmidt. "They shouldn't have done that. They ruined it."
Annette Bergunder said she was sad the crosswalk had been defaced.
"People have to destroy something that's so pretty. It took a lot of money and work," she said.
The crosswalk cost $8,500 and is expected to last five years, Kerr said. It was painted in advance of Surrey's Pride celebrations, set to take place June 30 at Holland Park.
Other rainbow crosswalks in B.C. have been defaced in recent years, including one in Fort Langley that was vandalized last summer just hours after it was painted.
The Surrey mayor's office declined comment, saying it didn't want to give more attention to the act.
With files from Tina Lovgreen and Yvette Brend
- An earlier version of this story stated that the rainbow crosswalk was painted at Holland Park. The crosswalk was in fact painted at Old Yale Road and University Drive.Jun 26, 2018 5:20 AM PT