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City to pursue landmark status for Legacy Walk
by Matt Simonette
2018-06-27

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On June 22, as Chicago's Pride weekend kicked off, city officials announced that they'd be pursuing landmark states for the Legacy Walk in Boystown.

"The Legacy Walk is not only a historically significant legacy of the LGBT community of Chicago, but a signal that the entire city is a safe and welcoming place for everyone," said Mayor Rahm Emanuel in a statement. "As we celebrate Pride Month, let's recognize the countless contributions made by LGBTQ Chicagoans and reaffirm our unwavering belief in equality for all."

According to the city's statement, "Landmark Status will protect the steel pylons and outdoor museum that define the Boystown streetscape. It is being considered for its unique cultural, historical and social heritage, its celebration of individuals who significantly contributed to the development of Chicago, and its distinctive physical presence as a visual feature of the Boystown neighborhood, among other criteria."

The Planning, Historic Preservation & Sustainability Bureau of the Department of Planning and Development will handle the matter. After several months, it will make a recommendation to the Chicago Landmarks Commission; after a public review, the commission would then forward a recommendation to the City Council.

In a statement he sent to Windy City Times, Legacy Project Co-Founder and Executive Director Victor Salvo said, "We are humbled and thrilled by the mayor's history-making decision to pursue landmark status for the Legacy Walk and the world-famous Northalsted Rainbow Pylons. The Legacy Walk was conceived to provide a place where LGBT youth could come to learn about the historic achievements of people like themselves—role models whose contributions to the world we share have been so redacted that we have been rendered invisible even to ourselves.

"Today, the Rainbow Pylons and the bronze memorials of the Legacy Walk are the realization of that vision. Safe and affirming places are vitally important to LGBTQ people. They always have been. And always will be. In an era when historically 'gay' places like San Francisco's Castro Street and the Village in New York are rapidly disappearing, it is truly remarkable to have Mayor Emanuel pursue the Chicago Landmarks Commission to officially recognize the Legacy Walk/Rainbow Pylon Streetscape as the only installation of its kind on earth. It is the only way to make sure there will always be a place for us."

Related information here www.windycitymediagroup.com/lgbt/Mayor-Emanuel-pursues-landmark-status-for-Legacy-Walk-/63304.html .


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