As tensions have grown over the statue of Christopher Columbus in Marconi Plaza, The City of Philadelphia and officials have announced they will will seek the removal of statue after a news release this afternoon. The city will ask the Philadelphia Art Commission to approve the removal.
The statement said:
"Christopher Columbus became a symbol of Italian communities' contributions to U.S. history, but scholars and historians have uncovered first-hand documentation establishing that his arrival in the Americas also marked the beginning of the displacement and genocide of Indigenous people.
In recent weeks, clashes between those individuals who support the statue of Christopher Columbus in Marconi Plaza and those who are distressed by its existence have deteriorated to a concerning public safety situation. It is a situation that cannot be allowed to continue.
The City is committed to finding a way forward that allows Philadelphians to celebrate their heritage and culture, while respecting the histories and circumstances of others that come from different backgrounds.
Before that presentation, however, the city said it will allow for public input through written submissions. Those submissions are due by Tuesday, July 21.
The public will also have an opportunity to testify at the Art Commission meeting. The city said more details on that process will be shared when available.