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Design Review Board signs off on light changes for Hernando de Soto Bridge

MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- The Downtown Memphis Commission's Design Review Board signed off Wednesday on a proposal to replace the lights on the Hernando de Soto Bridge.

The project would replace the current lighting system with high-tech LED lights similar to the ones on the Big River Crossing.

Officials said the current lighting system on the bridge is more than 30 years old.

Taxpayers won't have to pay for the new lights. A private donor, the same as the one who contributed to the Harahan Bridge lighting project, gave a multimillion-dollar donation, though the exact amount is still being discussed in negotiations.

TDOT, the city of Memphis and the Coast Guard still need to sign off on the lighting plan.

If all groups approve the lights, it's unclear when they will go up; a representative said it's an ambitious project they hope to begin this year.