Dancing Lights | 7th Street Oakland


This public art program, at the scale of the looming transportation infrastructure, elevates the pedestrian experience of the transit village. A line of blue “dancing” street lights, crooked like musical notes, recalls 7th Street as a hub of once Jazz/Blues culture. A gateway structure, designed in response to community requests, conceived of in the style of a freeway exit sign, is emblazoned with the faces of local and national African American leaders. The gateway and dancing lights aim to create a destination that instills a sense of ownership among the West Oakland neighborhood, mediating adverse impacts of transportation infrastructure and building upon a rich historical/cultural context.

Design Process

1) History Research > 2) 7th Street Jazz/Blues Culture Research > 3) Community Engagement > 4) Parametric Design > 5) CNC Prototype > 5) Electronics Prototype > 6) Manufacturing/Installation on Site

Design Tools

Rhino > Grasshopper (Image mapping) > CNC Routing

Media: Plaza and Gateway Design
Type: Urban Design
Dimension: 2.5 Acres
Budget: 1.6 Million
Proposal Location: 7th Street, West Oakland, CA
Project Manager: Shivang Patwa
Project Team: Hood Design

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