The aesthetic design of the SH-9E Bridge is a meditation on water. Blue, the color of water, represents the nearby Lake Thunderbird and Canadian River located near this bridge. The bridge’s blue girder slenderizes the whole structure of the bridge making it appear light and nearly floating in the clear, blue sky. Undulating waves in the Art Deco style are applied in a motif across the span of the parapet fascia. To break up this expansive wave pattern, inverted blue triangles appear at intervals along the parapet. These accents provide the parapet fascia with some color in the midst of its rhythmic, symmetrical design.
Also playing off of the Art Deco styling are the pier sets. Each pier has a fluted base that then sprouts out to form the arms of the lintel. Abstract in its form, each pier represents the thunderbird of Lake Thunderbird, with the tail feather being fluted, and the lintel arms being the wingspan. Blue ribbon work accents the wings to provide color as travelers drive under the bridge.
The SH-9 East Bridge is part of an eight bridge Aesthetic Master Design Plan CDR developed for the I-35 Corridor in Norman, Oklahoma. The design for each bridge finds its inspiration in either the history, architectural, flora or fauna, or the industry of this region.