The new bridge will be an iconic structure that increases capacity and improves driver safety. Its design includes dual shared-use paths on the outside lanes for pedestrians and cyclists, reconstruction of the highway approaches to the bridge, and improvements to public facilities in the Gulf Breeze Wayside Park.
“The design provides the bridge with several landmark aesthetic features, including a wishbone tied-arch main span and multi-color aesthetic lighting that will create a ribbon of light across the bay,” Rudie said.
The arches are designed to maximize the visual impact from all perspectives and provide a durable, easily maintained structure. The architectural details of the tower- supported shade structures and piers mimic the arch’s wishbone, providing scenic views from both the low- and high-level segments of the bridge. Lighting, railings and surface are detailed to accentuate the architecture.
While it is not unusual for new bridges to include pedestrian paths, the use of paths on both sides of the bridge is uncommon. “Strong community involvement led to providing the bridge with two pedestrian paths instead of one,” Rudie said.
The paths will feature educational plaques and other features selected by the community to highlight the local area and history. “The pedestrian path overlooks will encourage walkers and cyclists to explore the bridge and enjoy the journey from shore-to-shore,” Rudie said.