Shreveport's once iconic 'neon bridge' now stands mostly dark - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Shreveport's once iconic 'neon bridge' now stands mostly dark


The once iconic neon bridge has been growing dimmer and Shreveport residents have noticed, they aren't the only ones. City leaders say they brainstorming ways to bring the bridge back to life. 

Victoria Barnhill works at Fatty Arbuckles under the Texas Street Bridge also referred to as the neon bridge, but lately, she's noticed, the neon bridge isn't so "neon" anymore. "I've lived here all my life, even as a kid I remember it being lit up, I think it's sad not to see it in it's former glory," said Barnhill. 

Even Shreveport Mayor Cedric Glover noticed, on the Fourth of July he tweeted out a picture of the dark bridge with hash tags "we must do better" and "priorities".

"I think what people are seeing is a culmination of age, as with anything, the older it gets the less reliable," said Shreveport Public Assembly and Recreation (SPAR) Director Shelly Ragle-Stone says the true neon lights were installed 20 years ago as part of a Shreveport art project.  But now according to her, the aging technology has become difficult and expensive to maintain. Some of the bridge's neon colors aren't even manufactured in the United States anymore. "So that's why 18 months ago, we started a conversation about what's our next step because we do know there is technology out there that is easier to maintain," said Ragle-Stone. 
"The neon bridge is the reason why they come here," said Ronnie Dale, who used to drive a taxi cab in Shreveport for years.
He says the bridge was a top requested spot and hopes to see new life breathed into it, no matter the cost. "You're going to have to spend some money to attract money, we can use all the tourist business we can get," he said.

City leaders say they are still at the beginning of the process. How much it will cost and how it will be funded, are both things still being considered. 

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