Grab your trunks and inflate your inner tubes, because Times Square is getting a "river." Brooklyn-based artist Molly Dilworth beat out 150 other artists for the commission to paint the pedestrian plazas on Broadway from 47th to 42nd Streets. Her "temporary" design, titled "Cool Water, Hot Island," is composed of a graphical representation of NASA's infrared satellite data of Manhattan. Here's why she won, according to the DOT:

The artist's concept focuses on the urban heat-island effect, where cities tend to experience warmer temperatures than rural settings. The proposed design's color palette of striking blues and lighter hues reflects more sunlight and absorb less heat - improving the look of these popular pedestrian plazas while making them more comfortable to sit in. The color and patterns evoke water, suggesting a river flowing through the center of Times Square, and they also provide a compelling visual counterpoint to the reds, oranges and yellows of the area’s signature marquees and billboards.

Dilworth's design was chosen by representatives from the DOT, the Times Square Alliance, the Mayor's Office and the Design Commission, plus "an outside artist" serving as an advisor. (She'll be paid $15,000 from the nonprofit Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City.) Since Bloomberg decided in February to make the Broadway pedestrian plazas permanent, the DOT began moving forward with a design process for the area’s permanent capital reconstruction project. Construction on the permanent plazas is expected in 2012, but the interim river will begin flowing by mid-July, and is expected to run about 18 months. And for those of you just joining us on the Broadway pedestrian plaza saga, here's a handy video primer from the DOT: