BOSTON (CBS) – The statue of Christopher Columbus that was beheaded earlier this year in the North End will not be returned to its original location. It will now be housed in a new development being built by the Knights of Columbus.
The statue was taken down to be fixed after it was vandalized in June.
In a virtual meeting with the North End/Waterfront Council Monday, Mayor Marty Walsh said it would not be “structurally” safe to return it to Columbus Park.
The city will repair the statue before giving it to the Knights of Columbus. “It will be visible for everyone who wants to see it,” Walsh said. “It will still be an important part of the fabric of the neighborhood.”
Walsh said the city will work with the community on creating a new statue for Columbus Park.
“The new statue will highlight the contributions of the North End Italian immigrant community,” Walsh said. “That was the original intent of the statue when it was put up over 40 years ago.”
The statue in Columbus Park had been the target of vandals in the past. The head was also cut off back in 2006. The statue was doused with red paint in June 2015 with the words “Black Lives Matter” spray-painted on the base.
When the statue was beheaded this summer, Mayor Walsh said there would be conversations about the “historic meaning” of the incident and whether the statue would ever go back up.