If anybody had doubts about how great an enhancement there is in bridge lighting over a major body of water, they should be convinced of the aesthetic value after viewing the new Stan Musial Veterans Memorial Bridge over the Mississippi River at St. Louis. The print and televised pictures of the bridge at night tell a story of infrastructure beauty.

It brought to mind the enhancements for the proposed new Washington bridge over the Missouri River, which include lighting. Funds for enhancements for the new bridge are limited — about $800,000, which will came from the city of Washington and Franklin and Warren counties. The city is providing $500,000 of that total. The limited funds will be used for lighting the piers and girders, and for decorative fencing and lighting along the pedestrian walkway.

The new Washington bridge, with construction slated to begin in late 2016, is a different structure from the Stan Span at St. Louis, which is expected to be used by 40,000 vehicles a day. The traffic on the present Washington bridge is 10,000 to 12,000 vehicles a day.

The Stan Span, a joint project of Missouri and Illinois, cost about $695 million. The Washington bridge has an estimated price tag of about $60 million. The St. Louis bridge has 400-foot towers. Its 1,500-foot main span makes it the third-largest cable-stayed bridge in the United States, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The towers and cables are lighted, along with the deck. There’s much to light, much more than what is planned with the new bridge here.

The Stan Span structure is proof-positive of how lighting enhances a bridge!