Canada Day in Edmonton will be extra special this year.
In addition to the firework display above the River Valley, the new lights on the historic High Level bridge will be finally unveiled.
The Light the Bridge fundraising campaign announced on Mar. 4 that the group had reached its goal of $2.5 million to purchase and install 50,000 LED lights on the bridge.
The lights will be officially unveiled at 11 p.m. on Canada Day when the High Level bridge becomes a red and white light showcase, synchronized to a special performance of the national anthem performed by the Edmonton Symphony Showcase.
Raising the $2.5 million dollars might have been the easy part of the project — actually installing them was quite a challenge.
“We weren’t allowed to drill any holes or weld anything to it,” said Blake McGrath, the light installation manager for the project. “We had to pretty much leave the bridge the same way that it was when we started, so it was a lot of custom clamps and stuff to go onto the bridge.”
Workers spent the past month installing the lights, but say you will not be able to see the clamps — just the High Level bridge in a different light.
Derek Pogany, who works for Prolux Lighting and was in charge of programming the light show, did a test run on Thursday, controlling the lights from his laptop right next to the bridge. He's looking forward to Tuesday's big unveil.
“Now with the light we can see all the intricate structure — the steel, the holes within the steel,” he said. “People say it looks lovely and I have to admit, it’s an impressive sight.”