July 15th, 2024

City painting crosswalks in anticipation of Pride Fest

By Lethbridge Herald on May 4, 2022.

Herald photo by Al Beeber City crews begin putting permanent paint on a concrete crosswalk at the intersection of 3 Avenue and 7 St. South Tuesday. The City is painting two crosswalks in honour of the LGBTQ+ and trans communities at the intersection. They will be finished well in advance of the Return to Pride events that run June 20-25.

Al Beeber – LETHBRIDGE HERALD – abeeber@lethbridgeherald.com

Two permanent LGBTQ+  and trans flag crosswalks are being painted at a downtown city intersection.

Urban revitalization manager Andrew Malcolm and Pride Fest president Lane Sterr on Tuesday discussed the work at the corner of 3 Avenue and 7 St. S.

Malcolm said the durable paint material which is going on concrete is expected to last about 10 years. Other regular painted crosswalks laid on asphalt, which have celebrated the LGBTQ+ community, have lasted about a year before they wore off.

The crosswalks will be ready well in advance of the Return to Pride events scheduled for June 20-25.

The City first painted temporary crosswalks before the 2016 Pride Fest. In 2017, city council approved the 3 Avenue South reconstruction project which included a permanent rainbow flag crosswalk and a permanent transgender flag crosswalk at the intersection.

“This is an important addition to our downtown and to this Third Avenue project, something that’s been in the works for a number of years since the Lethbridge Pride Society came forward to the City and requested it be included as part of the design,” said Malcolm.

“Here we are a number of years later finally ready to put that paint down on the concrete crossing. It’s a really exciting time for us. We’re really proud that the history of downtown is rooted in the diversity of people that live, work and play and shop in the downtown and we think this is a great symbol of that kind of welcome and inclusive space that we want to see,” added Malcolm.

Malcolm said the pride society has had an impactful history downtown and the City is hoping this is another step in terms of a positive relationships moving forward. He said the City will see more diversity and inclusivity downtown.

The location was chosen because it’s a prominent intersection, said Malcolm, connecting both to Casa and Galt Gardens.

“It just carried that extra little bit of value for the community,” Malcolm added.

Sterr said the permanently painted crosswalks have “been a long time coming. I think more than ever today as we see a lot of efforts or bills like the ‘don’t say gay’ bill or other efforts to discriminate or kind of erase queer history, I think it’s really important that we have these crosswalks that are permanent. . .they’re here and you can’t take that away from us.”

Lethbridge, according to Sterr, could be the first community to have a permanent progressive flag painted on a crosswalk.

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