Capital of Spain Gets New Gay and Lesbian Traffic Lights for Pride Festival

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By Kieran Corcoran | 4:32 am, June 6, 2017
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Spain’s capital city is being fitted with gay and lesbian traffic light systems to coincide with a major LGBT pride festival.

A series of crosswalk signs in Madrid – which typically feature a single green man – are being replaced with new lights which depict same-sex couples.

Some of the lights will show two men crossing, while some will show two women.

In total, 72 crossing signals will be replaced, at a cost of around €21,700 ($24,500) altogether. According to the Associated Press, the change will be permanent.

Organizers have also suggested a plan to replace black-and-white crosswalk markings with rainbow ones.

The mass replacement is being introduced to celebrate Madrid’s status as host of this year’s WorldPride festival.

The 10-day event, which has previously been held in Rome, Jerusalem, London and Toronto, begins on June 23rd and ends on July 3rd. Its website promises that it will be the world’s biggest LGBT event.

A scene from a previous Madrid pride event

WorldPride is supposed to be held every four years, though organizers keep finding reasons to hold them more often. The next host city will be New York in 2019.

Madrid is not the first city to bring equality to the patriarchal traffic control system.

London changed some of its traffic lights for its annual pride parade last year – then extended the time for which they were kept up.

Earlier this year officials in Melbourne, Australia replaced ten of its traffic light signals to depict women crossing the street instead of men.

The system was rolled out on a 12-month trial and may be extended come 2018.