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Modernized Weather Beacon To Be Rededicated At Iconic Gulf Tower

Photo Credit: KDKA Web Intern Alyssa Klimas

Photo Credit: KDKA Web Intern Alyssa Klimas

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The city skyline is about to become a bit more colorful with the reinvention and modernization of a Pittsburgh tradition.

KDKA-TV is joining with the owners of the iconic Downtown Pittsburgh building, the Gulf Tower, and Rugby Realty Co., Inc. to bring back the Weather Beacon.

The KDKA Weather Beacon at the Gulf Tower will be officially rededicated on July 4.

In a press release, Larry Walsh, Rugby’s Senior Vice President, said: “One of the most common questions I get about this amazing building is in regards to the roof top Weather Beacon. Pittsburghers fondly remember its flashing and colorful lights when they would come to Downtown. Over a year ago, we committed to restoring this landmark to the Pittsburgh Skyline in an educational, energy efficient and beautifully artistic way.”

The top six floors of the Gulf Tower were first designed to display weather conditions through colors back in 1932.

However, it was the high cost of maintenance to the individual neon tubes that caused the Gulf Oil Company to reduce weather-related operations to just the pinnacle floor of the building several decades later.

Now though, Cindy Limauro and Christopher Popowich, design partners in C&C Lighting, LLC, are working to modernize the fixture in the city skyline.

The husband and wife team have designed “an interactive weather beacon using ultra high efficiency LED fixtures and a roof top mounted weather monitor.”

“The architecture of the Gulf Tower is the perfect backdrop to paint with light. It has been exciting to visually create a 21st century weather beacon.” Limauro, a Carnegie Mellon University professor, said in a press release.

The Weather Beacon will once again provide Pittsburghers with an advanced weather report, and it will also be used to recognize both holidays and special events with light displays.

Using different colors as indicators, the Beacon will display the following:

  • 39th Floor: Current wind speed
  • 40th Floor: Current humidity
  • 41st Floor: Current precipitation
  • 42nd, 43rd & 44th Floors: Current temperature

The rededication will be held at 9:20 p.m. on July 4 and will feature a holiday lighting program to complement the city’s annual fireworks show.

It will be launched by a Wish Kid through the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

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