Madrid installs gay and lesbian lights at crossings

madrid world pride festival same sex lesbian gay crossing lights
The lights will be set up at 72 crossings across the city Photo credit: AAP

It is all go for same-sex pedestrian crossing lights which have been installed on city intersections ahead of the World Pride Madrid festival.

In all, 72 figures of gay and lesbian couples will now tell those in the city for the festival when it is safe to cross. The first of them went up on Monday (local time).

They're part of the wider preparations for the festival, normally held every four years, which this year coincides with the 40th anniversary of the first LGBT demonstrations in Spain.

It's the world's largest event for the LGBT community and will turn the Spanish city's streets and avenues into one big party with music, dance, performing arts, sports competitions, conferences and events for children.

The centrepiece for the festival is the Pride Parade in which more than 3 million people and associations from around the world will march in solidarity for equal rights.

Madrid City Hall paid €22,000 (NZ$34,600) to replace the 288 lights at 72 crossings and will remain after the official celebrations are over.

It's estimated the festival will bring in €300m (NZ$473m) into the local economy.