Dallas, TX – In about two weeks, the Dallas skyline will change. The 400 foot arch of the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge over the Trinity River will be "up". KERA's BJ Austin says Dallas Council members celebrated the progress by "autographing" the top of the large, steel arch.
Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert and council members wore hard hats, bright orange vests and carried sharpie pens into the gigantic steel pipe.
Leppert: This piece that we're signing now is actually going to be at the top. It'll be 400 feet high. It'll be what people see.
And Rebecca Rasor, Trinity River Corridor Project director says the 40 story arch will be visible for miles very soon.
Rasor: It's thrilling to be down here and see how big this is. And just to think that in a couple of weeks the whole arch will be up, and in a short year, we'll be driving on it.
Michael Wisenbaker is Margaret Hunt Hill's grandson. Getting a close look at the steel pieces and progress of the Santiago Calatrava-designed bridge was an eye-opener.
Wisenbaker: It's unbelievable in scale. When I looked at when they put it up so far, I thought it was probably getting close to the top. Then I heard it was just half way finished. So, it's unbelievable.
The first of three proposed "signature" bridges - the Margaret Hunt Hill - is to open late next year. Its 120 million dollar price tag is almost twice what was envisioned nearly a decade ago. The two other "Calatrava" bridges wait for funding.
The 400 foot arch is comprised of 25 segments, and is 100 feet taller than the new Cowboys Stadium. It is what's called a cable-stayed' bridge. 58 steel cables will be strung from the arch to the center of the bridge deck.