Fundraising mark met as village gets ready to install illumination equipment
A timely donation in the fundraising effort to illuminate the Bridge Street dam in Grafton was accepted Monday by the Village Board.
First Bank Financial Centre presented a $2,100 check to the board to help cover the cost of the $37,587 project, which calls for the downtown landmark to be showcased in the glow of colored LED lights attached to the Bridge Street bridge.
The Art in Motion project, which is being privately funded, has been spearheaded by the Public Arts Board, a seven-member committee that spent more than two years raising money for the effort.
First Bank Financial Centre’s gift brings the fundraising total to the needed level, officials said.
Steiner Electric of West Bend has been hired to install 10 lights that will be attached to the north side of the bridge, which overlooks the Milwaukee River waterfall.
Shields will also be placed on the bridge to limit the amount of light shining on neighboring properties.
The lights will be regulated with a computerized program housed in a structure that will also control a dam gate installed this year. The program will allow lights to be projected in a variety of colors and patterns as it reflects off the water.
The project was initially expected to cost less than $30,000, but changes in equipment and installation plans raised the total. Village Administrator Darrell Hofland said the changes were required to ensure proper candlepower would be projected by the lights.
In addition to Public Arts Board fundraising events, the project received five major donations: $11,300 from Steve Cary of Cary Apartments; $10,000 from the Zaun Memorial Foundation; $7,500 from Sue Cary; a $5,000 anonymous gift; and the First Bank Financial Centre contribution.
Hofland said equipment has been ordered for the project, but no installation date is scheduled. No additional cost is expected from the operation or maintenance of the lights, which have a projected life of more than 10 years, he said.
“The Village Board, Public Arts Board and the Grafton community itself is thankful for the support the project has received,” Hofland said.
“We’re pleased that sufficient funds were raised so that it can proceed.”
The Art in Motion project is expected to be one of the few of its kind in Wisconsin, Hofland noted.
“The genesis for the idea was to focus attention on the Milwaukee River and the newly renovated dam,” he said.
“This project will help brighten the downtown.”
Once the lights are installed, Village Engineer Dave Murphy will work with the Public Arts Board to determine what illumination options will be used, Hofland said.