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St. Augustine leaders looking for donors to illuminate Bridge of Lions

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Updated: 7/02/2013 6:17 pm
ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- St. Augustine leaders are getting ready to launch a pilot project that will feature a brighter and more illuminated Bridge of Lions.

Dwight Parish spends a few days of the month at the St. Augustine Municipal Marina, his favorite view from his boat is the iconic bridge.

"I just think it's a huge addition to the city that they decided to maintain it as it is," said Parish.

City leaders are trying to change it, in a bright way. A plan is under way to illuminate the bridge by adding light fixtures.

According to City Commissioner Don Crichlow, the city plans to debut a test run of what the bridge will look like on the 4th of July.

"I actually was sitting at The Landing in Jacksonville and looked at the bridge lighting there and I said we're missing the boat if we don't do a similar thing for the Bridge of Lions," said Crichlow.

One dozen energy efficient lighting fixtures will be propped up underneath a portion of the bridge for the test run.

Expert lighting designer Bill Brennan, who has been responsible for lighting in at least 10 Super Bowls, is taking on the project for free.

"The bridge has a personality the intent is to enhance the personality but not do it for the sake of the light," said Brennan.

In anticipation for the project the city has already invested about $40,000 to install electrical conduits. In order to complete the project they'll need another $200,000 but they don't want that money to come out of taxpayers wallets.

"I think in this atmosphere with the 450th celebration coming up in the next couple of years, I really think it's an optimum time for someone who would like to contribute to the 450th to step forward and make this a reality," said Crichlow.

One lane of the Bridge of Lions will be shut down on Monday so that Brennan can install the light fixtures.

The city will showcase their lighting pilot project through July 15th to give people a chance to see them in action and provide them with feedback.

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