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Bright Idea!

March 8th, 2013

'Bay Lights'. Photo credit: Flickr user prawnpie, via Creative Commons

The big world-famous bridge in San Francisco? The Golden Gate Bridge , of course. But there’s another bridge in San Francisco that’s getting a lot of attention these days and one that most people haven’t even heard of … until now.

Artist Leo Villareal  had the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge decked out in 25,000 lights creating a light sculpture that moves and sways, never quite the same way. It’s programmed to respond to its environment such as traffic patterns, water, and nature.

Amazingly, Mr. Villareal runs the entire light show from his lap top!

Screen shot of map at

The bridge is 1.8 miles long and 500 feet tall in parts. More than 50 million people are expected to see it in person. The project cost about $8 million.

The electric bill? It’s expected to be just $15 a night.

This public art show will be up for two years, into 2015. “Bay Lights” was officially lit March 5th.

Some people are concerned that a project like this creates light pollution. You can click here for a video to learn more about light pollution . Representatives of ‘Bay Lights’ say they have addressed this issue because their installation is in a heavily populated area and on a bridge that is already lit, and it’s temporary. They are also using LED lights which are considered energy-efficient.

There’s a video below. But you can also watch it live over the Internet every night, starting at about at dusk in the west coast, each night.  Click here  to be taken to their  live stream .

We’d love to know what you think! 

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