Huntsville council is once again looking at the possibility of installing a rainbow crosswalk.
It would be installed on Main St.
In June 2022, council backed off the idea of painting a rainbow crosswalk in front of the Canada Summit Centre because of how much it would cost. Instead, the Pride Progress flag was attached to a sign in front of the crosswalk. The crosswalk is just steps away from Huntsville High School.
The idea, which was put forward by Coun. Helena Renwick, was unanimously approved.
Renwick explained she noticed how worn down and damaged the crosswalk is when she was walking home from town hall. “I looked down and I saw that winter had taken away pretty much all of the surfaces that were on the road for the crosswalk,” she said.
The approval, though, doesn’t mean the idea is going forward. It allows staff to request permission from the District of Muskoka to work on the project. They will also have to reach out to Muskoka Pride and the Downtown Huntsville Business Improvement Area to figure out how much the project may cost.
Main St. is a district road, so any work done on it has to be approved by them. However, an amendment was approved that would allow the town to repaint the crosswalk without having to go to the district.
A report will be discussed by council about the next steps at a later date.
The primary idea for the crosswalk is to show support to the 2SLGBTQI+ community, but Renwick believes it will support tourism as well since it will help brighten up downtown.
“When kids at high school see a flag being burned but then they walk downtown and see something like [the rainbow crosswalk], it’s the mental health impact as well,” added Coun. Scott Morrison, referencing the Pride Flag that was burned at Huntsville Public School in June 2021.