Opened just six months before its counterpart, the Golden Gate Bridge, the Bay Bridge has connected the city with Oakland and the East Bay areas since 1936. A glittering necklace of lights was added to commemorate its 50th anniversary in 1986 and the Bay Lights for it’s 75th anniversary.

The San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge holds the title of longest high-level bridge in the world at 8.4 miles. Completed in 1936, the Bay Bridge earned the honor of being declared the seventh wonder of the world in 1955 by the American Society of Civil Engineers. It is actually two different types of bridges--suspension on the San Francisco side and cantilever on the Oakland side--connected via tunnel through Yerba Buena Island. Due to the extraordinary depth of the water, ranging from 50 to 105 feet, and a bay floor thick with several layers of mud, the building of the bridge brought about new engineering challenges. Special caissons (watertight chambers) were designed for digging through the Bay floor in order to embed the bridge's foundation in bedrock. As more people began making the East Bay their home, the Bay Bridge became the most heavily traveled bridge in the Bay Area, third busiest in the country, carrying more than 250,000 vehicles daily.

While on Treasure Island, look west to the city's skyline, one of the few places you can enjoy breathtaking views of the city without the crowds.

General Visitor Info

It is recommended that visitors time their visit to mid-day hours as there is usually heavy traffic during commute hours. The toll is $5 going west.

The Bay Bridge is undergoing a major seismic retrofit. The anticipated completion date for the project is 2013. In the meantime, the bridge is open to traffic with minimal closures (primarily at night and on weekends) for construction work.

When complete, the eastern span will no longer feature the double deck structure. Instead, this span of the bridge will have side-by-side decks to give travelers on the bridge more views of the bay and a more open feeling as they travel across the bridge.

How to Get There

Please note as there is no pedestrian access to the Bay Bridge (in contrast to the Golden Gate Bridge), a good place for views of the bridge is from the Embarcadero waterfront. Take the N Judah or F line inbound and get off at the Embarcadero station. If you want to travel across the bridge to Treasure Island and don't have your own car, hop on Muni line #108 at the Transbay Terminal.

For additional information, routes and schedules, please visit the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency or call 415.673.6864.

Surrounding Neighborhoods

Embarcadero / Financial District
SOMA / Yerba Buena

Get more information on the neighborhoods here.

Did You Know?

The Bay Bridge opened on November 12, 1936 and the original fare was $0.65.

Movies that included the Bay Bridge:

2012 (2009)
Made in America (1993)
The Graduate (1967)