Speaking to Lusa agency, the coordinator of Porto Pride, Diogo Vieira da Silva, said that the event will take place on the 7th, 8th and 9th of July at Parque da Pasteleira, a location provided by the Porto City Council.
“It is not the ideal solution”, said Diogo Vieira da Silva, adding that, unlike 2019, the festival could not take place in the city center “due to Metro works” and, consequently, “constraints to circulation”.
The organisation also tried to have Porto Pride take place on the roof of the Trindade metro station, but, despite the “availability” of the Metro do Porto management, the venue “does not support the weight of more than 2,000 people, not including structures”.
Diogo Vieira da Silva said that he had already visited Parque da Pasteleira with the rest of the Porto Pride team and that, despite the space being “fantastic”, there were problems regarding access and security.
“It was a concern that we conveyed to the municipality”, said the official, when asked about the insecurity reported in that area, especially by residents, due to drug consumption and trafficking.
As for access to Parque da Pasteleira, the official said that the organisation will, together with the Porto City Council, “try to reinforce public transport to the site or create dedicated modes of transport for the three days”.
Lack of support
Diogo Vieira da Silva also criticised the lack of support from public entities for holding the event.
“We will have logistical and stage support from Ágora [municipal company dedicated to Culture and Sports], but that is not enough”, he defended, saying he did not understand how a free festival, like Porto Pride, does not have financial support from the municipality which, in turn, “will support the [Festival] Primavera Sound with 600 thousand euros”.
In response to Lusa, a source from the Presidency of the Porto Chamber said that "this is a place that is available, if you don't want it [organization] you have to go look for it in another municipality".
With free access, this is the first year that Porto Pride takes place over three days and promotes a cycle of conferences – 'Porto Pride Summit' -, in which “fundamental” themes for the LGBTQI+ community will be addressed, such as, activism, business and politics.
Porto Pride has been held in the city since 2001, at the time in a “behind closed doors” format and different from the current one. Between 2012 and 2018 there was a “hiatus”, with the festival being “recovered” in 2019, the year in which more than 12,000 visitors passed through Praça D. João I.
“We expect to receive at least 15,000 people, but if it goes as planned, we believe that we will receive 35 to 40 thousand visitors”, he said.
During the three days, Diogo Vieira da Silva said that in Parque da Pasteleira a lot of “music, fun, cultural spaces, entertainment spaces and drag queen contests” are expected, with the performance of the Angolan transsexual singer Titica already confirmed.