Local councillors have launched a “rainbow road” to celebrate diversity and inclusion in St Kilda, close to the site of Victoria’s Pride Centre.
Port Phillip Council Mayor Bernadene Voss said the rainbow landmark ran for 35 metres along Jackson Street to the Fitzroy Street intersection and was “a fitting curtain-raiser” to the Pride Centre around the corner.
“This fantastic symbol of diversity and inclusion will be in pride of place for the annual Midsumma Pride March along Fitzroy Street for the next two years,” Cr Voss said at the launch on Sunday.
She said the council had originally wanted to launch a rainbow-themed landmark during the marriage equality debate as a public show of support for inclusion.
“While logistics prevented us from doing this on State Government assets during this campaign, we are excited that everyone can now come and enjoy this colourful representation of the diversity for which St Kilda is famous,” she said.
“Hopefully we can do another rainbow-themed celebration in partnership with the State Government when the Pride Centre opens.”
Cr Voss encouraged people to come along and see the colourful landmark and to share its message on social media.
“We hope our road will be enjoyed by many visitors over the next few years, and that they will share this important message of love and equality through selfies with the hashtag #stkildaisforlove,” she said.
“The resurgence of St Kilda is well and truly underway and we couldn’t be happier that its long-standing reputation as a welcoming place for the LGBTIQ community continues with our rainbow road.”
The council said the paint on the rainbow road is expected to last two years.
City of Pride… congratulations to Mayor @bernadenevoss and the @cityofportphillip for the opening of Australia’s longest Rainbow Road yesterday, celebrating pride in diversity! As a #Stkilda local, I couldn’t be more proud of this occasion! What a wonderful morning emceed by the one and only @therealdollydiamond – – #stkildaisforlove #pride #celebration #diversity #prideindiversity #melbourne #event #lgbt #canonphotographer #rainbow #rainbowroad #fabulous #canon #street #loveislove #3182
The Pride Centre is set to become a hub and permanent home for 10 major LGBTIQ organisations including radio station JOY FM, the Victorian Aids Council and the Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives.
In June, Lord Mayor Clover Moore announced a new rainbow crossing will be installed in Sydney, five years after the city’s first one was controversially removed.
The new rainbow crossing, which is hoped to become a permanent fixture, will sit on the corner of Bourke and Campbell streets in the Taylor Square precinct in Darlinghurst.