Mayor Kasim Reed announced on Monday – the first anniversary of the Pulse nightclub shooting -- that the city will install rainbow crosswalks at the intersection of Piedmont Avenue and 10th Street. Permanently.
Reed's office relesaed this statement from the mayor:
“On June 12, 2016, amidst the celebration of Pride Month, 49 individuals lost their lives in an unspeakable tragedy in Orlando, Florida. Today, on the anniversary of this horrific event, we remember those whose lives were lost and those that were forever changed. Our thoughts and prayers were with you then, and they remain with you today.
For the past year, Atlanta has grieved alongside Orlando. Our city has rallied around our LGBT community, and we have not shied from demonstrating our unity and solidarity. And with this spirit, I cannot think of a more important time to reaffirm our unwavering and unqualified support for our LGBTQ residents.
I believe that symbols of unity matter; in recognition of the outstanding and ongoing contributions of Atlanta’s LGBTQ community to our city, I am pleased to announce today that the City will install the rainbow crosswalks at the intersection of Piedmont Avenue and 10th Street year-round. This intersection in Midtown is recognized for its history as a hub for Atlanta’s LGBTQ community, and it is fitting that such an important and recognizable place should feature the rainbow flag.
We must never forget that love defeats hate, and light defeats the darkness.”
We've reached out to the mayor's office to ask when the crosswalks will be installed and will update the post if we receive a response.
In April, transgender activist Sarah Rose launched a petition to return the crosswalks to the Midtown intersection.
In 2015, some 221 donations raised $44,911 to install rainbow crosswalks in the Midtown intersection. Organizers wanted them to be permanent, but the installation turned into a two-week temporary project after a back-and-forth between supporters and city officials. The city apparently initially OK'd the crosswalks as a permanent installation but then pulled back when the Department of Public Works objected over safety concerns