A proposal to rename San Francisco’s airport after the late gay rights leader Harvey Milk, has been dropped, and the lawmaker who proposed it will aim to have a terminal named after Milk instead.

Supervisor David Campos had proposed putting a question on the city ballot of whether to rename the airport, currently San Francisco International Airport, after Milk, however he abandoned it in the face of strong opposition, including from city’s daily newspaper and Mayor Edwin Lee.

He said that opponents to the idea wanted the airport to be named after a different figure, or not renamed at all.

As a compromise, Campos has now announced that he plans to introduce an ordinance to establish a committee to recommend which of the four terminals at the airport, should be named after Milk

“We wanted to do it in a way that was a unifying thing as opposed to having a political fight,” he said. “And we believe that is the best way to honor Harvey.”

Stuart Milk, co-founder of the Harvey Milk Foundation and nephew to Harvey Milk, expressed how far the US has to go to achieve equality.

“We have work to do in the US, don’t get me wrong, but where Harvey was 35 years ago is where so much of the world is today, so I think that is what resonates the most,” he said.

Having finally been elected in 1977, Milk only held his position for 11 months before being assassinated by Dan White, a former colleague who had lost his position in city administration.

Milk has been described as a martyr for gay rights and a visionary. A 2008 biographical film of his life received two academy awards.

In December last year, a middle school teacher in Mexico was fired after screening the film to her class. Also in 2012, a street in San Diego was named Harvey Milk Street to celebrate his 82nd birthday.