Pulse nightclub site to be converted into permanent memorial under new plans

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The Pulse nightclub may be converted into a permanent memorial to the 49 victims of the mass shooting, according to proposals filed this week.

49 people died and more than 50 were injured in the Orlando massacre last month, when a gunman opened fire during a Latin night at the Florida gay club. The majority of the victims were LGBT people of colour.

The owners of Pulse had initially signalled that they planned to re-open, holding a defiant street party in the wake of the massacre and promising to carry on.

But plans filed this week suggest that the current site of the nightclub may become a memorial.

According to the Orlando Sentinel, the non-profit onePULSE Foundation, set up by the club owners in the wake of the shooting, has filed plans for a memorial to be built there.

It is unclear if it would sit alongside a re-opened club, or if the club itself would move to a new location.

A statement said: “​​​The onePULSE Foundation is the only official 501c incorporated by the owners of Pulse Nightclub.

“onePULSE Foundation’s initial focused mission is to provide financial assistance to the victims affected by the attack at Pulse Nightclub.

“It will also contribute to the creation of a permanent memorial at the existing site of Pulse Nightclub providing a sanctuary of hope dedicated to the lives affected and taken by the tragedy in Orlando.”

Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer said he would hope to involve the local community in developing the plans.

He told WTVR: “Think about how long it took them [to build memorials after disasters] in New York City and Oklahoma City.

“What you want to do is do an appropriate permanent memorial, and I want to make sure we get a lot of input from the effected communities and the city.”