The Chattanooga Public Arts Commission is working on lighting changes for the bridge. (Photo: Ashley Day)

During City Council’s Innovation Technology Committee meeting, the Chattanooga Public Art Commission gave officials a first look at potential changes to the lighting on the Walnut Street Bridge.

City officials saw an opportunity to update its lighting in a way that would do more than illuminate the path for pedestrians, and Chattanooga’s Public Art Commission began looking for artists who could highlight the bridge’s unique architecture and its community function.

City Public Art Commission Director Katelyn Kirnie said they had settled on services from Moment Factory, which designed the lighting on Montreal’s Jacques Cartier Bridge.


Kirnie said that they are creating a concept similar to the Jacques Cartier Bridge which uses big data, like the number of tweets in the area or weather forecasts, to create light shows every hour. She said that this could highlight the bridge’s function as a community meeting place while showing off the bridge’s structure.

She said that the lighting would also be sensitive to the Ed Johnson memorial.

The $2-million lighting project would be funded by federal and local dollars, some of which is from the hotel-motel taxes.

City Council will vote March 13 on the resolution that would permit the city to enter a $38,000 contract for conceptual design services with Moment Factory.

Alina Hunter-Grah is a contributing writer. She currently attends UTC, where she was previously the news editor of the student newspaper, The University Echo. Alina also worked at CNN during the summer of 2017 and is the former Chattanooga correspondent for 2nd & Church, a literary magazine based out of Nashville. You can reach Alina at [email protected] or on Twitter @alinahuntergrah.