The currently-under-construction eastern span of the Bay Bridge gets a little more photogenic tonight: Caltrans will be lighting up the orange catwalks they've installed to prepare for the installation of the bridge's main suspension cable sometime in 2012. Although the lights are going up so construction crews can work at night, they ought to give nighttime drivers and people with enviable apartment views a good idea of what the completed bridge will look like at night.

A Caltrans spokesman said in an afternoon press conference that the lights are necessary because nighttime construction work is ideal to avoid heating and stretching of the precisely measured cable. The lights themselves are leftover from construction on another Interstate 80 construction project - the Alfred Zampa Bridge over the Carquinez Strait just South of Vallejo.

Even the Bay Bridge itself (an inanimate object, to be sure) seems excited about the sunset lighting. Its personal twitter account lit up with a couple happy-looking emoticons this evening:

:D My new span's cable catwalks will be lit up in an hour and fifteen minutes! (Thanks for the hand-me-down of lights, Carquinez Bridge!)Tue Aug 30 01:32:13 via web