Big Four Bridge Lights the Night With Color

February 11, 2015

Today marked the beginning of a nightly light display on the Big Four Pedestrian/Bicycle Bridge. Each evening from around sunset until 1:00 a.m., a program of LED lighting will provide motion and color to the structure of the bridge. A daily  schedule of programming will provide rainbow effects or combinations of 2 or 3 colors that dance and move across the bridge. Certain holidays will have a dedicated theme, such as shades of red and pink for Valentine’s Day, green for St. Patrick’s Day, and red, white and blue for the Fourth of July.

The installation includes 1,472 LED lights, which bathe the bridge structure with kinetic light. Because the bridge is matte rusted steel, the lights will not reflect off of the surface of the bridge to cause a glare in surrounding areas.

“This is going to add a whole new level of enjoyment for visitors to the park and bridge,” said Waterfront Development Corporation President David Karem. “We have received glowing feedback from folks who have gotten a glimpse of the lighting during testing.”

The cost of the LED lighting project was $2.1 million, and private donations covered ¾ of the cost. Significant contributors included the James Graham Brown Foundation, Marlene and David Grissom, LG&E, the Gheens Foundation, Sandra Frazier, and Gallopalooza. More than 100 individuals, organizations and businesses donated to the project.

“The Big Four Bridge has quickly become a favorite destination and an iconic landmark for our city,” said Mayor Greg Fischer. “These new lights and colors will add even more energy and appeal and create a nighttime attraction that will draw and welcome visitors and citizens alike to our waterfront.”

The lighting system, comprised of LED fixtures by Philips Lighting, was designed and programmed by Vincent Lighting of Northern Kentucky, and Installation was done by Advanced Electrical Services of Louisville.

The Waterfront Development Corporation manages the bridge, and a policy will be implemented by the WDC Board of Directors to handle any special requests for lighting the bridge.

Bridge lighting will operate year-round. The LED fixtures are estimated to last 10 years and the cost to operate them will be minimal.

The Big Four Bridge opened to the public in February 2013, and the Southern Indiana ramp was completed in May 2014, allowing access between Waterfront Park and downtown Jeffersonville. Counters were installed in June 2013, and since that time there have been more than 2 million pedestrian and bicycle trips across the bridge.

Photo Credit: Duke Marsh


About Louisville Waterfront Park: Waterfront Park is an award-winning 85-acre public park on the banks of the Ohio River in downtown Louisville, Kentucky. The park enjoys more than 2 million visitors each year for concerts, festivals, charity walks and other organized events, and walks over the Ohio River on the Big Four Pedestrian/Bicycle Bridge. For more information on Waterfront Park, visit