Downtown Portland paints the third of ten Pride crosswalks

More towns and cities in Maine are celebrating Pride by painting a number of their crosswalks in rainbow colors. The Portland Downtown organization collected paint and scrolls and traveled to downtown Portland to create these artworks that recognize and celebrate the LGBT community.

Downtown Portland is a non-profit downtown improvement district formed in 1992 to foster a vibrant, thriving and sustainable downtown community. They are funded by a tax levy paid by downtown area property owners and other supporters.

Portland Downtown members were on Market Street at the intersection with Commercial Street with their Portland Downtown safety vests to paint the Market Street crosswalk red, yellow, orange, green, blue and purple, alternating between white existing.

This is the third of 10 planned Pride Rainbow Crosswalks – here’s where they’ll all end up:

  • Park and Congress Streets
  • Park and gray streets
  • Oak and Congress streets
  • Center and Congress streets
  • Center and Spring streets
  • Center and commercial streets
  • Exchange and Spring Streets
  • Market and commercial streets
  • Pearl and Congress streets
  • York and High Streets

As grand as these crosswalks are, there are a small number of people who don’t appreciate them, including a Brunswick motorcyclist who vandalized the city’s Pride rainbow sidewalk in May by posing there rubber shortly after it was painted. The whole incident was filmed.

Others have complained in comments on social media that it’s a waste of taxpayers’ money. In the case of Portland, the work was done by downtown Portland, so the only taxes used to pay for paint and supplies came from property owners in the downtown area.

Actions and comments like this still show that we still have work to do to ensure Maine’s LGBT community receives the same respect that all humans deserve. Hope these colorful crosswalks can help people understand each other.

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