Riverwalk light art installation and activation

Ryan Moffatt | Economic Development Project Manager, Office of Economic Development, City of Des Moines

The Idea: After years of construction to rebuild or overhaul the bridges crossing the riverfront downtown, a new project will be needed to bring excitement and traffic back to the Principal Riverwalk to mark its reopening. A signature public light art project could be an effective placemaking technique for this regional attraction. Incorporating substantial public art elements, including interactive light art, to the Principal Riverwalk can help to cement the riverfront as a signature regional destination and offer a place where people will want to stroll and congregate. Similar to new phases of the San Antonio Riverwalk, light art could be incorporated under the bridges, temporary art elements that could be added to the river itself during non-high-water periods, the inclusion of playful, interactive art features along the promenade, even colorfully lighting up the unsightly electrical substation could all be potential ideas. The emphasis will be on having art elements that offer high visual attraction or will be interactive for the public to experience, rather than static sculpture work. >