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The Wabash Lights

(Above) Rendering of The Wabash Lights, an art project being installed under the elevated L tracks on Wabash Avenue in the Loop. (Click on images to view larger versions.)

Money being raised to expand ‘Wabash Lights’ another two blocks

21-Nov-16 – The goal of 600 colorful lights beneath the L tracks on Wabash Avenue is getting closer with the launch of a second Kickstarter campaign. The plan is to extend The Wabash Lights for two blocks, for now, but according to a video uploaded to YouTube on Saturday, the lights, programmable to users of a smartphone app, will be “the biggest piece of public art in Chicago.”

Filmmaker Jack Newell and design strategist Seth Unger need to raise $50,000. They are selling naming rights to some of the lights, either full four-foot fixtures or one of 40 “pixels” that make up each light. As of Monday morning, the campaign has 135 backers and has raised $12,000.

The Wabash Lights A Kickstarter campaign last year raised $59,480 to pay for the installation and testing of four 12-foot LED fixtures between Monroe and Adams Streets (left). An additional $25,000 came from the media company, Comcast.

“The project will transform an iconic piece of Chicago infrastructure into a canvas for a dynamic, interactive experience, serving as a catalyst for a re-energized Wabash Avenue,” say Newell and Unger in a statement.

To expand beyond two blocks, they figure they will need $1.5 million.