Photo from the Long Beach Convention and Entertainment Center.
After just over a year and a half of construction, The Rainbow Bridge connecting the Promenade side of the Long Beach Convention and Entertainment Center to the Terrace Plaza is officially complete. The 605-foot elevated pedestrian walkway in downtown Long Beach, with its LED lights and wave-like arched canopy, will open to the public at 8:00PM tonight.
The bridge is the result of Mayor Robert Garcia, Long Beach City Council and city management working with the Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) to design and build the $10-million architectural icon, the latest addition to the convention center’s $60 million renovation and upgrade, according to the announcement.
“We needed a shorter way for people to get from one side of our Convention Center Campus to the other, but we wanted something that would visually complement the modern, contemporary style of our Center’s new special event venues,” Steve Goodling, President and CEO of the Long Beach CVB, said in a statement. “Our team looked at a lot of designs, but when we saw the proposal from SPF: architects, we knew we had a winner. The Rainbow Bridge is more than a walkway—it is a functional piece of art!”
At night, the bridge’s arched canopy will show colorful waves of programmable LED lights “cresting” above pedestrians’ heads. With 3,500 LED lights, 100 downlights and 70 floodlights, the walkway will serve as an eye-catching illumination near the downtown waterfront. Other features include bench seating alongside California native foliage and landscaping, and a place for visitors and residents alike to catch a great view of the city.
The Rainbow Bridge runs east and west above the north side of Seaside Way and provides a shortcut between the north entrances of the convention center on Pine Avenue and the Terrace Theater Plaza, The Cove, Seaside Ballroom and Meeting Rooms, as well as the Long Beach Arena and Pacific Ballroom. It reduces the walking time between locations, enhances public access to the convention center and downtown waterfront and improves pedestrian safety by separating walkers from vehicle traffic.