The City of Ames looked to RDG Planning & Design to design a dynamic sculptural lighted marker that would create a gateway or entry corridor from Interstate 35. A series of lighted columns designed to frame the entrance to Ames gives this area a new identity and sense of arrival.
The symbolic icons speak to the growing technology and vitality of the community. The project grew to become a pilot project entitled "Light and Stone," located along the exit ramp on US Highway 30 to the intersection of Southeast 16th and Dayton. The definition of illumination is to "enlighten," as in to share knowledge. The lighted beacons, or sculptural candle forms, are placed in a colonnade, or line, welcoming people to the community as one might place a candle in the window. The project continued to expand through an Iowa Department of Transportation Community Enhancement Grant, the City of Ames, South Ames Business Association and other private funding.