Once placement of 169 steel girders, as long as 130 ft, is completed for the three structures and enough concrete deck poured so that traffic can be diverted, the joint venture will begin demolition of the old bridges. There are potential liquidated damages of $10,000 a day beyond July 2013.

Other jobs in the overall initiative include a 20-mile foot trail and an $806-million urban boulevard that will include a new arched bascule Douglass Bridge as the "crown jewel," says Nicholson. Preliminary design is nearly complete.