Bridge of Lights: Building a Book

The last two posts to WalkClickMake have focussed on a small project I am working on, a walk down Winnipeg’s Arlington Street in Winnipeg and across the splendid landmark at its midpoint, the Arlington Bridge.

The idea began innocently enough last May, with a casual walk across the bridge and an opportunity to play with the panoramic function of my iPhone to create a few abstracted views of the bridge’s superstructure.

Those  experimental images led, later that year, to my Arlington Street project:  a walk down the length of the street; a visual diary of still and panoramic photos; an essay; and, finally, a book. Continue reading

Bridge of Lights: A Walk Down Arlington Street

It’s April 8, 1911 and Winnipeg’s newest bridge is nearing completion. A Manitoba Free Press headline reads: Bridge of Lights, New Arlington Viaduct Will be a Night Sight for Winnipeggers. The writer continues:

The new Arlington street bridge across the C.P.R. yards when completed will be one of the night sights of the city as the result of the decision of the board of control yesterday to instal ornamental lighting standards on each side of the bridge roadway. The poles on each side will be seventy-five feet apart, and each will cary big incandescent globes. By alternating the lights, this will mean a big light every 37 feet across the bridge.

Sadly, the lighting never came to be. But, in the idea of glowing globes, there is a glimmer of recognition that this bridge has a purpose well beyond transporting traffic from one side to the other. This bridge of steel, crossing a broad river of rail tracks, connecting neighbourhoods on either side, serves a broader civic function. Continue reading