Because the structure's decorative surfaces have to withstand the effects of salt water, blazing sunlight, and wear meted out by pedestrians and boaters, mosaic tile was used in various sections of the bridge. The bridge's 26 piers were covered at the waterline with alternating life-size mosaics of dolphins and manatees, species native to Florida's Atlantic Coast. Each pier has the same panel design, but the designs are rotated to give a sense of movement.
In addition to the pier mosaics, 18 mosaic panels were added to the pedestrian walkways, beginning with illustrations of shells on the ocean floor, which transition to a variety of sea creatures, then to land animals, waterfowl, and birds. A mosaic featuring a pair of bald eagles marks the apex of the bridge, after which the panels repeat in the opposite direction. The walkway walls of the bridge feature 36 smaller panels of Florida mangroves, plants and animals that were mounted in pre-cast concrete shells.