Within days of the accident, the Florida DOT started planning a replacement bridge. To prevent the repeat of such an accident, huge concrete barriers called dolphins were built marking the channel through the bridge. Florida Governor Bob Graham suggested the cable stay design after seeing similar bridges in France. As a result, the bridge was named after the Governor in 2005. A cable stay design with a single set of cables running down the center of the bridge was chosen to give motorists an unobstructed view of the water.
Part of the old bridge lives on. The causeway sections on both ends of the old bridge were preserved as public fishing piers. Crossovers were installed between the lanes to allow vehicles to turn-around. Shops were built to allow visitors to have restrooms, and buy food (both human food and bait). The fishing piers have proven to very popular and are heavily used. They provide a unique way to cast a line a mile or more offshore without having to charter a boat.