Here’s something to literally brighten your day: The Castro, a district of San Francisco that is historically gayer than Liza Minnelli riding a unicorn, has voted to perk up its streets by installing rainbow crosswalks.
There were other proposed designs, including one inspired by Muni cars and another that echoed the tiles on the Castro Theater, but proud residents opted for the straight-up (no pun intended) rainbow option. The city is paying $37,400 to install the bright new pedestrian crossings at the 18th and Castro intersection, and they’ve promised to have them finished by the time the Pride march rolls around in June.
If that’s not sweet enough, other upcoming municipal improvements include recognition for San Francisco’s history of LGBT activism:
The crosswalks will join a host of other renewal projects, including wider sidewalks. new trees, repaved roads, bike racks, and better outdoor lighting. MUNI catenary wires will be relocated, and a Rainbow Honor Walk will feature inlaid plaques with the names of LGBT civil rights activists.
West Hollywood in L.A., which also has a large gay population, put in similar crosswalks in 2012:
West Hollywood city officials say the crosswalks helped the area to be seen as a desirable destination for gay travelers, and Andrea Aiello, executive director of the Castro/Upper Market Community Benefits District, told the L.A. Times that the Castro’s pedestrian crossings would mark the fact that “LGBT people still think, ‘The Castro, that’s where I can go to feel safe.'”
Frankly, though, we think every city could use a dose of brightness like this. Purple, green, and gold in the French Quarter of New Orleans, maybe? Green in the Financial District? Let’s think outside the black and white box.