Terrace is a city already blessed with tremendous naturally occurring rainbows that come from the sky, so having one painted across the street as city council decided to do last night might be a natural fit.
The city voted last night to paint a rainbow crosswalk somewhere downtown in order to show its support of the Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transsexual (LGBT) community.
Local resident Sarah Artis had sent a letter requesting that such a crosswalk be installed, saying she was inspired by the same project recently OK’d in Prince Rupert.
Artis says these public displays acknowledge the “often underrepresented members of our community.”
Council was unanimous in their support, however, the location of the colourful painted sidewalk is still up in the air.
One suggestion was a rainbow sidewalk spread from the Elephant’s Ear Bistro running across the street to the Xander’s Coffee side on Lakelse Ave. Another is across from Dairy Queen to the Baker Extraordinaire side on Park Ave.
And yet another location for the coloured crossing would be between Mark’s Work Warehouse and Bear Country Inn on Lakelse.
“There were some very interesting comments by council made about that today,” said Leclerc after the meeting.
“It’s an ask that we can do. It will be interesting as we move forward to see if it’s a huge cost to keep this up if it fades away each year. You certainly don’t want to put down a rainbow crosswalk and then find out that it’s going to be an expensive thing to keep replacing each year.”
Councillor Brian Downie called the move a step towards inclusivity said but that “the issue of diversity is bigger than a sidewalk.” He added that broadening acceptance should be a community-led, rather than a municipally guided function.
Like all other councillors, Lynne Christiansen voted in favour of the crosswalk but said that she worries about precedence for other groups wanting special projects covered by the city.
Council estimates the crosswalk would cost about $1,800 to install, but a firmer estimate is expected soon. A regular crosswalk costs about $500 to do.
City staff will come back to council at a future meeting with a recommendation as to where and when the crosswalk should be painted.
The Village of Masset on Haida Gwaii has also decided to paint such a crosswalk in support of two-spirited people.