Lifestyle - October 10, 2017

Orlando to install rainbow crosswalk near Pulse this week

[dropcap]O[/dropcap]rlando will install a rainbow-colored crosswalk this week across Esther Street near Pulse nightclub, in memory of the 49 people killed in a mass shooting there last year.

The onePULSE Foundation hosts a town hall meeting at the Orlando Repertory Theatre, on Monday, October 9, 2017.

Mayor Buddy Dyer confirmed the crosswalk plans at Monday’s City Council meeting, during which commissioners also approved the onePULSE Foundation’s plans to erect a new fence and add seating and landscaping outside the shuttered nightclub.

An online petition in July calling for a rainbow crosswalk at Orange Avenue and Kaley Street garnered 2,762 signatures, but Dyer said Esther Street is a safer place for Pulse visitors to cross.

“On Esther, there won’t be as much traffic and it’ll be a much better place if people are going to take pictures,” he said Monday.

Dyer spokeswoman Cassandra Lafser said work on the crosswalk was slated to be done by Thursday.

The road is not expected to close for the work, and Lafser said traffic would not be disrupted.

The updates to Pulse approved Monday are part of an “interim” memorial plan to make the club more welcoming to visitors, while the onePulse Foundation seeks ideas for a permanent memorial.

A town hall meeting on that subject was held Monday evening.

The upgrades are expected to include lighted benches, a new fence with murals, landscaped planters and an expanded walking area around the club, the onePULSE Foundation’s designs show.

Dyer praised the plans Monday.

“You guys have done a fantastic job on the temporary memorial site, making it much more accessible and using the space on the site that currently is not available for use,” Dyer said.

“It’s going to be much more friendly, I think, to the public that are coming there.” or @JeffWeinerOS on Twitter

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Lake Nona Golf & Country Club