The group of experts who chose the final design of the bridge, involved top architects, engineers, seismologists and academics, however few of them had any experience in bridge design and construction. Among the two alternatives that were placed on the table, the conventional design approach of a cable-stayed bridge and the self-anchored span bridge, the design panel made a choice based on "aesthetics" and "without appreciation of its challenges" according to a Caltrans report. Caltrans report also states that the group was warned of the technical difficulties of the selected design scenario.
But no matter how elegant the selected design was, there were a series of problems that appeared during construction. As a result, total costs ended up higher than those required for the principal alternative of a cable-stayed bridge.
Have an overview of the bridge's main issues here!