Update: The Bay Lights will return and be permanently re-lit on January 30, 2016 – hold the date!
The Bay Lights went dark on the evening of March 5, 2015 and are scheduled to return in 2016. Here were the evening send-off festivities:
March 5, 7:30 p.m.: The first 1,000 people to arrive at the patio behind Waterbar (399 The Embarcadero, San Francisco) will receive an LED tea light. Gifted by Illuminate the Arts in appreciation of public support for The Bay Lights, the tea lights will continue to glow while the artwork is removed for bridge maintenance and serve as a reminder that the darkness is only temporary. Artist Leo Villareal and Illuminate the Arts Chief Visionary Officer Ben Davis will speak at 8 p.m.
Lights on the Bay Bridge are lit at dusk each night and patterns are algorithmically generated. The motion is quite beautiful and always changes. My favorite spot is to walk south of the Ferry Building at the end of Market Street out on the pier or along Embarcadero toward the giant bow and arrow sculpture. There are also boat tours which I always thought would be beautiful as well.
The Bay Lights is a site-specific monumental light sculpture and art installation on the western span of the San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge, designed to commemorate the 75th anniversary of its opening. The installation by light artist Leo Villareal includes 25,000 individual white LEDs along 1.8 miles (2.9 km) of the cables on the north side of the suspension span of the bridge between Yerba Buena Island and San Francisco. The installation is controlled via a computer and displays changing patterns that are not meant to repeat. The opening ceremony was held on March 5, 2013. Initially intended as a temporary installation to end on March 5, 2015, the project is now seeking donations and funding to make the display a permanent feature. (Wikipedia)