Nearly two months after the tragic mass shooting that left 49 dead and 53 injured at Pulse gay nightclub in Orlando, the city’s mayor says he wants the club to become a permanent memorial, WFME in Orlando reports. Mayor Buddy Dyer said that the club should remain as it is, a memorial where people can come to pay their respects to the victims of the June 12 shooting.
The owner of the club, Barbara Poma, vowed to reopen in June, but plans for the club have been up in the air in the months following the shooting that sparked worldwide vigils and other acts of solidarity. In his Wednesday interview with WFME, Dyer stated,
At some point I think the city needs to gain control [or] purchase the Pulse site and then make some determination, with a lot of input, on what a permanent memorial might look like.
Dyer added that the club, should remain as it is for some time, leaving the various memorials to victims in place.
The Orlando Sentinel reports that Pulse’s spokesperson, Sara Brady, said that Poma has met with city officials regarding selling the club so that it could be preserved as a memorial, but said that the conversation is still in “very preliminary” stages. Regarding Poma’s wishes for the club, Brady told the Sentinel, “She really doesn’t know what she wants to do other than her desire is that the site become a memorial. It’s sacred ground to her.”