Permanent Pride crosswalk on university campus a first for Calgary

MRU student Eddy Robinson stands on the new, permanent rainbow crosswalk on the campus. Global News

Paint in every colour of the rainbow was put in perfect lines on the Mount Royal University campus on Tuesday, but the new multi-coloured crosswalk is different from others on city streets across the country this time of year.

The crosswalk, painted during the city’s Pride week, will be Calgary’s first permanent rainbow street crossing, aimed at showing support for the LGBTQ community.

“With this crosswalk, Mount Royal is showing its commitment to diversity and inclusion on campus,” university president David Docherty said in a statement. “We want all students, faculty, staff and community members to know that everyone is welcome at MRU and everyone belongs here.”

The crosswalk was donated to the campus by local business Zoom Painting, which will refresh the colourful stripes each year for five years. The contribution is valued at $17,500.

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Zoom Painting crews are seen at the permanent rainbow crosswalk on the MRU campus. Mount Royal University

Zoom CEO Kyle Friedman said the company is proud to be contributing to the crosswalk.

“It’s unbelievable what effect you can make with a little bit of paint,” Friedman said.

The crosswalk includes a black bar, which was added to the traditional rainbow Pride flag in 2017 to represent LGBTQ people of colour.

Eddy Robinson, a student and member of the Pride planning committee, said they were glad to see the university take steps to not only paint the crosswalk, but make it permanent.

“The community often only sees this display of solidarity around the time of Pride week, so a permanent Pride flag crosswalk gives me hope for a university committed to my community in the long run,” Robinson said.

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MRU student Eddy Robinson stands on the new, permanent rainbow crosswalk on the campus. Global News

The university is also expected to be a part of Sunday’s Pride parade.

The permanent Pride crosswalk is located between the Riddell Library, the Learning Centre and the Faculty of Arts Building on the the MRU campus.

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