Esplanade Riel to be illuminated in colour

Esplanade Riel to be illuminated in colour

Released: 10:33 a.m.

Winnipeg, MB – Tonight, for the first time, Esplanade Riel will be illuminated in a multitude of colours using the new programmable LED lights that were recently installed.

“Beginning tonight, Winnipeg’s Esplanade Riel will be illuminated for a 10-minute animated colour light display every hour on the top of the hour until midnight for Winnipeggers and visitors to enjoy,” said Mayor Brian Bowman. 

An RFP was issued for LED lighting on Esplanade Riel in January 2022. The RFP on the light project was to replace the existing incandescent lighting that illuminates the bridge cables and centre spire, with energy efficient LED lighting in order to reduce energy costs, as well as maintenance costs. The project also included the installation of programmable colour lighting in order to enhance aesthetics, and to allow them to be programmed to change colours. 

“Lighting bridges and other landmarks in different colours is being done in cities all over the world, so it is nice to be able to now light Esplanade Riel in the same way,” said Darren Burmey, Bridge Planning and Operations Engineer. “Without this upgrade, it wasn’t feasible to change the colour of the bridge lights in an easy to manage way.”

Each one of the 55 lights on Esplanade Riel can be digitally programmed to display a specific colour or a lighting sequence.

“We will be bringing forward a report to Council this fall with a proposed plan on how to best use these new lighting capabilities going forward,” said Felicia Wiltshire, Director of Customer Service and Communications. “We have seen other cities such as Edmonton, very successfully lighting key pieces of their skyline with involvement of the community and would look to build our program around those ideas.”

Until the formal lighting program is finalized by Council, the City will be using the new coloured lighting capabilities to add colour to Esplanade Riel in short intervals every evening. The bridge will have a 10-minute coloured light display occurring every hour, on the hour, from dusk until midnight.

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