West Hollywood to honor HIV/AIDS history with new monument

The City of West Hollywood will soon break ground on a massive monument to the victims of the HIV/AIDS crisis.

Stories: The AIDS Monument will be erected in West Hollywood Park, adjacent to San Vicente Boulevard and the West Hollywood Library. 

"The HIV/AIDS crisis is deeply tied to who we are as a city," said West Hollywood Mayor John Erickson. "Being a bastion of the LGBTQ community, we recognize we honor our history in this amazing way, is just a wonderful step our city is able to take."

It's a project over a decade in the making and will cost the city approximately $6.6 million. Tuesday, the city held a pre-construciton meeting, where officials showed renderings of the monument. It features a donor wall, and vertical bronze traces. Through light and art, it memorializes the devastation of the HIV/AIDS epidemic, and honors activists.

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"The design has changed a little bit over the years, but it's essentially 147 vertical, bronze - they call them traces - these long, kind of light pole-like elements. And there will be a field of them within the monument site," said project designer Michael Barker. "It's meant to really invoke kind of the feeling of how the HIV and AIDS epidemic hit people at that time."

Part of the $6.6 million price tag is covered by donations. The city hopes to complete the project in about a year.