In Late May, Key West in the USA installed four permanent rainbow pedestrian crossings at the intersection of Duval and Petronia streets – the heart of Key West’s LGBT entertainment district.
THIS is this first time in Florida that all four corners of an intersection have been connected with rainbow pedestrian crossings, with the crossings matching the six colours of the rainbow flag – an internationally recognised symbol of gay and lesbian unity.
Mayor Craig Cates, said: “Key West is very happy to be putting in the first thermoplastic permanent rainbow crosswalks in the state of Florida.”
“It means so much to Key West to show our diversity, and also it goes perfectly with our ‘One Human Family’ motto.”
Organised by the city and the Key West Business Guild, the rainbow crossings were created with pre-formed thermoplastic colour blocks alternating with white stripes.
After the blocks were laid on the street by the city’s Community Services Department workers, they were heat-treated with propane torches to affix the colours permanently on the pavement.
The rainbow crosswalks are the latest display of Key West’s longstanding embrace of diversity. One Human Family was implemented as the city’s official philosophy in 2000, declaring equality and acceptance for everyone, and the island is internationally known as a leading LGBT holiday destination.
“Accepting diversity has been going on for generations in Key West, mainly starting back when Key West was an island with no access but boats,” said Mayor Cates. “Everybody learned to live together, accept one another, so that has continued on through generations and is very evident today.”
While the rainbow crosswalks opened to traffic in late May, the official debut is today, Wednesday, June 10, to help kick-start the Key West Pride celebrations from June 10-14.