Calgary Pride’s rainbow crosswalk surpasses funding goal in 24 hours

Pride crosswalk Calgary
The city of Calgary showed its colours with a first-ever rainbow crosswalk in front of City Hall. Doug Vaessen / Global News

The rainbow crosswalk that needed to raise $4,000 before Calgary’s 2016 Pride celebrations kick off has exceeded that goal in record time–24 hours.

Coun. Sean Chu, the driving force behind the rainbow crosswalk, tweeted the news Friday with information on its new location:

“I was expecting two to three weeks,” Chu said. “It’s a big surprise we got $5,000 in 24 hours.”

As of Friday, the GoFundMe page raising money for Calgary PrideWalk 2016 was at over $8,000, more than double what was required for the rainbow crosswalk.

The paint will most likely be on the pavement by Sept. 1, weather permitting, on 8 Avenue and Centre Street near the Calgary Tower. City crews would paint it that night and it would be ready to be walked on by the morning if all goes to plan.

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“Ninth has too much traffic,”Chu said. “Eighth is better because there’s more pedestrians and it’s easier for them to take photos there.”

READ MORE: ‘Maybe it can be permanent’ – Calgary Pride rainbow crosswalk goes up at City Hall

The city had issues last year with the painted sidewalk, with pedestrians stopping in the middle of the road to take pictures of the rainbow underneath them. The city and Calgary Pride agree that for the safety of those wanting to take photos of the crosswalk art, 8 Avenue is a better choice.

“I’m glad I was a part of it,” Chu said. “I’m glad I donated.”

Although Calgary Pride only needed $4,000, the extra money generated will be used by Calgary Pride to “establish a more permanent representation of Pride in the City of Calgary,” according to the group’s post on the fundraising page.

Chu hopes the more permanent representation will arise somewhere in Calgary’s Beltline area.

“People in the city want to be inclusive,” Chu said.

“Everyone wants to be included, not just the LGBTQ community, but everyone.”

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Calgary Pride is still accepting donations online and continues to look for volunteers to help during the celebrations in early September.

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