History / Inspiration
In 1936, the East and West communities of the Bay Area came together like never before. While ferries had long carried people across the Bay's often choppy waters, automobiles were the future of transportation. This meant local residents wanted a quick way to drive between the rapidly growing cities of San Francisco and Oakland. As expected, as soon as the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge was built in 1936, it immediately became the favorite way to travel between San Francisco and the East Bay. The largest and most expensive bridge of its time, the Bay Bridge faced not just natural obstacles, but political hurdles as well. There had been discussion of building a bridge between San Francisco and Oakland since the 1870s, but construction did not move forward until the Reconstruction Finance Corporation, with support from President Herbert Hoover, agreed to purchase bonds to be repaid later with bridge tolls. The West Span, comprised of two suspension bridges, allowed easy passage for the Navy and merchant ships sailing to and from San Francisco. The original East Span features a truss-cantilever design, with pilings reaching hundreds of feet under the Bay to anchor the bridge. The bridge was constructed in five phases: first the East Span, followed by the tunnel through Yerba Buena Island, and then the West span. This was followed by the I-80 West Approach and on- and off-ramps, and finally, the Transbay Terminal in San Francisco. The terminal housed the control center for the four railroad lines along the bridge's lower deck. It took three years – and $77 million – to build the original bridge and Transbay Terminal.
About the designer
Designed by Carol Klammer of Oakland. This was her first design for Oaklandish and has become the most popular tee that we sell.