Hours: While the park closes at 11pm, the ramp at River Road and the bridge itself are open 24/7
Parking: Red lot, Silver lot, River Road (north side only)
The Big Four® Bridge links Louisville Waterfront Park to Jeffersonville, Indiana over the Ohio River. The Big Four® was built as a railroad bridge in 1895, and decommissioned in the 1960s, when the ramps to the bridge on both sides of the river were removed. It was included in the original Waterfront Master Plan as a pedestrian bridge. The bridge opened to the public in February 2013, and it averages more than 1.5 million visits per year.
The Big Four® Bridge has an LED lighting system that wraps designated areas of the bridge fretwork in vibrant colors that can be programmed into a rainbow of effects, highlighting the beauty and strength of the bridge structure, which dates back to its days as an active urban railroad bridge. The lights bathe the ironwork with color that enhances the bridge, while still allowing visitors to enjoy the wonderful views out from the bridge. Lights operate daily from twilight to 1:00 a.m.
BRIDGE LIGHTING POLICY
Want to give someone a unique birthday or anniversary gift or do a spectacular gender reveal? Reserve a date, tell us your colors, and we’ll do a special Big Four® Bridge Lighting program just for you!
The special lighting on the Big Four® Bridge can be customized for your charitable cause or special event. Individuals and organizations have an opportunity to specify up to 3 colors for a kinetic lighting program that will run for an evening or weekend for a fee that goes directly toward Waterfront Park operation and special projects. Lights come on at sunset and run until 1:00 a.m. You can check sunset times by date here.
Rates are $1,000 for one day or $2,500 for a weekend (Friday-Sunday). See the Bridge Lighting Policy/Special Lighting Request for more information and to fill out an application. Please reserve your date as early as possible* to ensure availability and allow time to program your lighting request.
*Payment must be submitted after date confirmation and at least 2 weeks before your reserved date.
The Louisville ramp is approximately 1/4 mile (1,181 ft.), the bridge itself is approximately 1/2 mile (2,562), and the Jeffersonville ramp is approximately 1/4 mile, for a total round trip of 2 miles.
Local author Kenny Karem has put together two fun activities about the Big Four® Bridge and the Ohio River. These are pdfs that you can print at home or access on your phone or tablet.
RULES OF THE BRIDGE
- No pets.
- No events are allowed on the Big Four® Bridge — the bridge is too narrow and crowded for organized events.
- No skateboards/in-line skates.
- No motorized vehicles (scooters, mopeds, motorcycles, cars/trucks).
- HOWEVER, personal mobility scooters and motorized wheelchairs ARE allowed.
- Service animals.
- Bikes of all kinds.
- Service vehicles (motorized wheelchairs, staff/security vehicles).
- Family fun!
- Dates – romance!