Skip to main content

ALERT: KPBS 89.5FM is undergoing scheduled upgrade work which may result in a temporary signal outage. Click here to listen on our radio stream.

LATEST UPDATES: Tracking COVID-19 | Vaccines | Racial Justice

Hillcrest Rainbow Flag Approved Unanimously By City Council

A plan to install a 65-foot pole that will fly a rainbow flag over Hillcrest -- home to San Diego's vibrant gay and lesbian community -- was unanimously approved today by the City Council.

The pole should be ready for the 12-by-18-foot flag this summer, in time for the annual Pride Weekend, said Benjamin Nicholls, executive director of the Hillcrest Business Association. It will be in the median of the intersection of Normal Street and University Avenue.

"The thing about the rainbow flag and the LGBT community is they reflect all of us. Every race, every culture, every religion is represented in the LGBT community and that flag stands for every race, every culture, every religion, and it speaks to equality and the promise of America for liberty and justice for all,'' said Dwayne Crenshaw, executive director of San Diego Pride.

The Planning Commission recommended three weeks ago that permits to install the pole be denied because of height and safety objections.

Speakers who opposed the flag at the City Council meeting said the pole was an unconstitutional private use of public land that favored one group of people. Nicholls responded that murals on public property in Little Italy and Chicano Park did the same thing without causing objections.

The pole and flag are being paid for with private donations.

"This monument is a physical manifestation of what Hillcrest means to thousands of San Diegans,'' said Councilman Todd Gloria, who represents the neighborhood. "It is a welcoming, safe, diverse and inclusive community -- and I happen to believe that statement is true whether you are gay or whether you are straight.''

Gloria is one of two openly gay members of the council. Carl DeMaio, the mayoral candidate who seconded a motion to approve the project, is the other.

The vote was 7-0, with Councilwoman Lorie Zapf absent.

FEATURED PODCAST

San Diego News Now podcast branding

San Diego news; when you want it, where you want it. Get local stories on politics, education, health, environment, the border and more. New episodes are ready weekday mornings. Hosted by Anica Colbert and produced by KPBS, San Diego and the Imperial County's NPR and PBS station.

  • Need help keeping up with the news that matters most? Get the day's top news — ranging from local to international — straight to your inbox each weekday morning.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Curious San Diego banner

Want more KPBS news?
Find us on Twitter and Facebook, or sign up for our newsletters.

To view PDF documents, Download Acrobat Reader.