The Golden One

San Francisco Travel Blog

 › entry 1 of 1 › view all entries
Make sure you sit and relax
October, 26: Two days ago, a man tried to jump the off the bridge into his death.  This is the 10th time this year where I had to witness such a sad event This has prompted me to write about the bridge I cross everyday.  How beautiful it is and how we take life for granted.  Historical facts are from I know from watching a special on PBS, please don't quote me as some fact maybe off, but hopefully you will get the idea :)  Enjoy.

Get it going, already!
This is the second longest suspension bridge in the USA right after one in New York or somewhere there. Plans to build the bridge began ten years prior to its initial construction in the early 1930's.  There was a lot of enthusiasm from the counties around the San Francisco Bay Area and budget was approved and paid by issuing bonds and city measurements.
Overlooking San Francisco
  The budget went over and throughout the construction, Joseph Strauss, the engineer who presented the idea and plans, had to recur to investor and ask for more money to end the bridge.   The design of the bridge was done by a an architect/engineer from Chicago who actually never got to see see master piece and little credit was given to him after the construction due to the never ending structural changes to the bridge.

Safety:
Strauss put on a big emphasis on safety, as the area where the bridge is built on suffers from grudge winds swaying the pillars and suspension back and forth.  Another issue was the cold dark-shark-infested waters mixing by the strong rips twisting, twirling against its own mass of water.   Lastly,  fog.
Can you read this??
  Dense fog, dark enough to turn high beams on during the winter was a dangerous obstacle for construction workers.   Strauss and company were worried about the safety issues and began implementing innovating safety techniques customized specifically for  every project, such as the catching net.   Only 10 workers died, or at least documented, all of them falling into their death. 
Construction ended in 1937 and the total cost was about $37 million dollars, more than half amount was financed is being paid back by charging a toll to users which as of right now is $5.00.  

Why orange? The color is actually "International Orange" and is to blend with its surroundings.  Maintaining the bridge is a year long effort.
Foggy morning.
  Paint is scrapped off and painted again with primer and paint stage by stage.  By the time painters reach the end of the bridge, the fist stage is rusted again, a process that takes approximately 12 months.  

$5 a pop? Really? Yes, and plans are to raise it to $7 and $6 on the weekends.   According to the Golden Gate site there there will be a deficit of over $60 million dollars over the next five years all from operations.

Don't jump! An average of 35 people jump off to their death from the bridge every year, recorded since 1960. The fall is about 4-5 second and by the time the body hits the cold-shark-infested water, is at 60-75 miles per hour.  There are a few survivors, a small percentage though and there was a lady who survived and jumped off the same year!
I know it is a pretty place to die but life is more important, so don't jump!

Tourism:  Everyday while a cross the bridge there are at least 50+ people walking across, either running, taking pictures.  Rain or shine, people from all over the world walk thebridge everyday.  During the summer the bridge and parking lots get packed.   There are two walkways, the right side overlooking San Francisco is for pedestrian and the left side, overbooking the ocean is for bicyclists.  You don't have to pay to cross the bridge! So, that is good news for you!


-The bridge connects San Francisco and Marin county.
-Bridge toll is $5.00 (2007)
-Total cost was a round $37 million dollars, which is still being paid.
-It is in the top ten structural marbles in the modern world, phasing out though.
-There are four major bridges connecting the San Francisco Bay Area, Golden Gate, Bay Bridge, San Mateo bridge, Richmond bridge.

Best time to visit:  Mid March - September.
Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!
Make sure you sit and relax
Make sure you sit and relax
Overlooking San Francisco
Overlooking San Francisco
Can you read this??
Can you read this??
Foggy morning.
Foggy morning.
Sponsored Links