Palm Springs Amends City Plan For ‘Forever Marilyn’ Statue

Tiani Jadulang

Since the Marilyn Monroe statue arrived in Palm Springs, it’s been a controversial topic.

Several business owners and residents celebrated when the 26-foot tall sculpture returned to the city in June of 2021.

Others weren’t as happy, groups showed up to protest, saying the statue objectifies an icon.

Since that day, different groups have been working to get the statue removed from the downtown area, with some filing lawsuits.

The original plan was for Marilyn to stay in her current location until 2024.

Today, Palm Springs City Council held a special meeting, where they decided whether or not the statue would become a ballot measure at a future election.

“I suggest the council vote to keep Marilyn at its present location forever.” one property owner said, at Monday morning’s meeting.

Ever since the statue had its first presence at the corner of Palm Canyon Drive and Tahquitz Canyon Way in 2012, many local business owners expressed and enjoyed the popularity it brought to the city.

“If we look at this in a cultural way, from equality, from rights, from Hollywood, from modernism, she’s a perfect fit for our city.” another resident adds about the statue.

On the other hand, many residents found the statue not fit for the City of Palm Springs.

“At a time when the country is decrying sexual violence against women, this tone deaf peace should not represent our city. At the very least, this monument to misogyny should be removed from the central location in Palm Springs… and we can do better. We can’t change the past but we can do better in the present.” Liz Armstrong, a resident says.

Monday morning, the Palm Springs City Council voted to determine the fate of the ‘Forever Marilyn’ statue.

The final decision, council voting to amend the Palm Springs Specific Plan to keep the sculpture. 

This plan would call to vacate a portion of Museum Way, to keep the statue in its current location, permanently.

“It fits in with the whole sort of feel of Palm Springs. I mean, it’s selling itself as a place that is different. This is this place, the architecture, the modernism week… it’s perfect.” Keith Patterson, a visitor from Oregon adds.

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