Sunday 9th July 1933
The ground breaking ceremony was held for the San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge. Crowds gathered at Yerba Buena Island to celebrate the world’s longest steel structure (4.46 miles) The 1-day ceremony included performances by the Young Women of Bay Cities and the United States Navy Band; an airplane flight that linked Rincon Hill and Oakland with a symbolic bridge of smoke; and a simultaneous detonation of blasts at Yerba Buena Island, San Francisco and Oakland by then-President Franklin D. Roosevelt from the White House. The bridge opened November 12, 1936. Until 1962 cars drove in both directions on the upper deck, while trucks and trains travelled in both directions on the lower deck. The bridge carried 9 million vehicles in its first year (102,200,000 per year today) and the cost of the original bridge was $77 million in 1936 (included Transbay Transit Terminal). Key System trains operated on the bridge from 1938 to 1958. In 1962 the bridge was reconfigured to carry cars and trucks only .The East Span suffered a partial collapse in the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake.