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Follow the Rainbow Brick Road, Permanently

City Council approves making the rainbow crosswalks on San Vicente Boulevard at Santa Monica Boulevard permanent.

The West Hollywood City Council voted Monday night to make the permanent.

The Council with the intention to restore the bricks to their original red color at the end of June. However, the crosswalks have proved so popular, they will now be a permanent part of the Boystown section of town, a popular destination for LGBT tourists.

Councilmember John Duran said the crosswalks, as well as the rainbow flags along Santa Monica Boulevard, are important for the soul of the city. He said while locals may take such things for granted, visitors do not.

“[The crosswalks] are critical to the tourists and young gay and lesbian people and not-so-young gay and lesbian people who are passing through from Iowa or Montana or Kansas,” Duran said. “They cannot believe that they actually see a municipality where the rainbow colors are on display all year long. It tells them it is a sanctuary. It tells them there is a safe place in America where the LGBT community is celebrated.”

Mayor Jeff Prang said that West Hollywood is a hospitality-based city and the crosswalks are now an important part of branding and marketing for the city.

Councilmember John D’Amico suggested creating a special Twitter hashtag and painting it on the crosswalks. He said the hashtag would likely turn up repeatedly as tourists come to West Hollywood.

Since it was originally intended to be temporary, the paint used for the crosswalks was not durable. That paint has faded and shows dirt and skidmarks from tires.

With the decision to make the rainbow crosswalks permanent, the city will have the crosswalks regraded and apply thermoplastic pavement markings like is used in other crosswalks. That thermoplastic marking will be slip and slide resistant, is less likely to fade and cleans easily.

The estimated cost to upgrade the crosswalks is $67,364. The estimated cost to temporarily paint the crosswalks was $13,000.

RTL August 22, 2012 at 08:18 PM
Thanks for putting up pictures of what the crosswalk really looks like and will continue to look like unless painted weekly or monthly: an embarrassing mess. My former comments stand and it looks like there are others with some sensible ideas about safety and traffic flow. Commission an artist for a permanent pride neon lit sign for the intersection of SMB &SV and use funds more wisely in future.
Mark Stevens August 22, 2012 at 11:28 PM
I say add glitter to the paint and make it even more fabulous!
joninla August 23, 2012 at 09:27 PM
I was surprised myself, so much so that I actually noted and remembered to have a positive feeling about the painted street. Just personal experience walking that same street with my dog all the time. Maybe flashing yellow cross-walk lights are too common and the yellow has a different meaning at a regular stop light. Dunno for sure - just my experience late on a Thursday evening (I think)
Miss J August 24, 2012 at 03:43 PM
Love it! Oooo and glow-n-the-dark stars where the lighting is dim! :)
Chloe Ross October 08, 2012 at 05:31 PM
@Mark Stevens - in the words of a famous broadway show (and you nailed it) "Glitter and be gay". Metal flake color would have made this style statement even more glamorous.

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