ETC Sets the Scene: A Bridge of Light

Portland, Oregon has built the first bridge in the region for over 40 years and suprised everyone with its innovative design including lighting installation. The ‘Tilikum Crossing, Bridge of the People’ bridges the River Willamette and thanks to ETC lighting equipment its a spectacular sight by day or night.

The Portland skyline is now defined by the form and unmistakable illumination of the 55m tall bridge, designed by San Francisco architects Donald McDonald.

The system design by Reyes Engineering of Portland includes a dynamic lighting system that reacts to the flow of the river, its depth, and the water temperature. The data comes from the US Geological Survey and is transmitted to the ETC Ion Remote Processor Unit, initiating a series of commands. The base colour is determined by the water temperature and the timing of colour and intensity changes by the strength of the current. Additionally, the water level is represented by a secondary colour pattern on the towers and suspension cables of the bridge.

The Challenge

The D40 spotlights were focussed with a telescope during the day, since construction work at night was prohibited. The telescope targeted each spotlight at specific points of the bridge.

Artiste Anna Valentina Murch Sets the Scene

The lighting effects were composed by Anna Valentina Murch and her husband Doug Hollis. Murch decided to use ETC spots when she saw the many colour options offered by the ETC Selador Desire, aided by Jon Friedmann of HL Stears Inc, the ETC representatives in Portland.

“Colour was at the heart of Anna Murchs’ design,” he said. “Only the D40 XTI spots offer a palate of colours broad enough to make her artistic vision a reality.” The result was a lighting system comprising 178 Desire D40 XTIs and numerous DMX opto-splitters in outdoor housings. The setup was wired together with more than 4.5km of cabling.

Source: TriMet / ETC

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