Liverpool City Council voted unanimously on Monday (19th September) to back the idea of creating a gay quarter in the already liberal city.
The ambitious plan was first put before the council earlier this month. Now that the plan has received full council support, the city planning department has announced it will begin to map out the neighborhood’s boundaries and work on a plan to attract gay businesses to the area.
This marks the first time an LGBT village has been specifically created by an act of a city council. In most cities, gay neighborhoods have historically sprung up on their own, usually as the result of several gay focused businesses opening or a boom in the real estate market.
In Liverpool, the village will be planned out with a strip for businesses and an area for housing surrounding it. The group of people who proposed the plan said they did so out of a sense that Liverpool needed a strong unified LGBT community to economically help develop its decaying central core.
Although Liverpool has its fair share of gay bars and clubs, they are currently spread throughout the area. With no village as a focal point, Liverpool has yet to host its own gay pride celebration.
Council members said they would look to neighboring city Manchester as a guide. Manchester has one of the most vibrant gay communities in Europe and annually attracts thousands of LGBT visitors from around the world.
“We hope to get moving on it very quickly and we want to talk to businesses who are already gay-friendly and also the gay community to get their ideas and suggestions about the way forward,” councilor Peter Millea said, according to 365gay.com. “Liverpool has always had gay-friendly bars, but they have never worked together as part of a strategy.”
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