Quite possibly one of the most famous bridges in the world, the Golden Gate Bridge is by far the most recognizable icon of San Francisco. Spanning over the San Francisco Bay, connecting the northern tip of the San Francisco peninsula to a portion of the south facing headlands of Marin County by Sausalito. When the Golden Gate bridge was completed in 1937, it was the largest suspension bridge in the world. It now stands in the number 2 position, behind the Veranzo-Narrows bridge in New York City. .
The Golden Gate Bridge stands as a testament to the human spirit and will. Due to the persistent fog, violent winds, and strong ocean currents below, the Golden Gate has been called the “Bridge that couldn't be built. " This San Francisco icon is now considered an engineering marvel of the 20th century.
The need for the bridge came about as the only other way to reach travel through the Golden Gate Strait, was by ferry. Engineer and bridge-builder Joseph Strauss recognized the need for a bridge as ferry congestion became an increasing problem.
The orange bridge, yes orange, is considered red, despite it's real color orange vermilion. Also called “international orange" this color was chosen by an assistant architect for two reasons: 1) it blended in nicely with the surrounding warm hues of the landscape amidst the cool hues of the bay and the sky 2) it was a bold color to help with visibility for ships below.
Strauss and his crew began the construction of the bridge in January 1933, and took just over four years to complete. Eleven men lost their lives in the contruction. Only one death had occured February 17, 1937; when a scaffolding accident claimed the life of ten men all in one day. The cost to build the bridge was over 35 million dollars. In today's world, the bridge would cost approximately 1.2 billion dollars to construct. The bridge opened to vehicular traffic on May 28, 1937.
Today the bridge stands stall in the San Francisco Bay and is a favorite tourist attraction for millions of people every year.
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