The first rainbow crosswalk in Guelph is on its way, but don’t expect to find it on a street near you.
The “beacon of inclusivity” is slated to be painted at Stone Road Mall this week.
“We always step up to support our community whenever an opportunity arises, striving to set an example and be a leader in the community,” states Christina Magee, the mall’s marketing manager, in a news release. “We hope to see more installations on inclusivity in our community like the rainbow crosswalk; Guelph is a beautiful city full of artistic expression and warmth for our neighbours.”
A rainbow crosswalk is to be installed outside the mall’s main entrance, near Indigo, on Wednesday.
“A community petition for the installation of a rainbow crosswalk in our city was widely shared online and we want those people to know they made this possible; we heard you,” added Magee.
An online petition launched by 11-year-old Mattea Somerville last fall, calling on the City of Guelph to install a rainbow crosswalk, gained nearly 1,000 signatures in five days. It has since grown to nearly 1,500 signatures.
City officials are looking into installing a rainbow crosswalk on public property, but the location and timing remain up in the air.
“We continue to work with Guelph Pride and they will initiate some engagement or participation through Pride Month this June,” said Danna Evans, the city’s general manager of culture and recreation, in an email. “Following that we will assess location and timing of installation in partnership with them.”
When asked about the issue in response to the petition, city officials at the time said plans for a rainbow crosswalk were in the works but given construction constraints in the downtown core, they opted to wait.