This may be more interesting to the Bay Area locals, but I figured other people might find it neat as well. This is an old newsreel about the Bay Bridge opening up back in 1936. I love the style with which this news is presented. It’s exciting and sensational and for good reason.
Some fun facts about the Bay Bridge (via wikipedia)
* The Bay Bridge is 44,352 ft (8.40 miles) long.
* One of the busiest bridges in the US, carrying approximately 280,000 vehicles per day.
* The legal name of the bridge is The James “Sunny Jim” Rolph Bridge
* Construction began on July 9, 1933, with the bridge opening on November 12, 1936, causing one of the greatest SF traffic jams ever.
* The total cost came out to $79.5 million (equivalent to $1.07 billion in 2005 dollars).
* The toll started at 65 cents, dropped to it’s lowest of 25 cents.
* The current toll for autos is $4, collected only for westbound traffic. For comparison, the original $0.65 toll in 1936 would be $8.62 in 2005 dollars.
* The dirt excavated for the Yerba Buena tunnel (the largest diameter tunnel in the world) was used in part to build Treasure Island.
* Construction for a more earthquake-resistant replacement on the eastern span began in 2002, with an initial completion date slated for 2007. Now they’re looking at somewhere around 2012 or 2013.