2002: The Opening of an Overpass for Pedestrians and Bicyclists in the Golden State

 February 27, 2002

A dedication ceremony was held for a pedestrian and bicycle bridge spanning Interstate 80 (I-80) in the city of Berkeley, California. “Jubilation as New Bridge Opens Car-Free Access,” announced a headline in the next day’s edition of the Oakland Tribune. This tied-arch concrete bridge, which is known as the I-80 Bicycle and Pedestrian Overcrossing, is 279 feet (85 meters) in length and 15 feet (4.6 meters) in width.

Angela Hill, a staff writer for the Oakland Tribune, reported on the festive opening-day atmosphere for the I-80 Bicycle and Pedestrian Overcrossing. “About 300 people nearly kissed the brand-new, pale-green arches of triumph for bicyclists, pedestrians, strollers, bladers, and wheelchair-users everywhere,” she noted.

Hill also recounted in that article, “They crossed the bridge to get to the other side and there was nothing resembling a chicken in the bunch except for one guy with a feathery, furry bicycle helmet.” She added, “They got to the other side, turned around and crossed some more. And they all rejoiced.”

One of those individuals rejoicing that day was 53-year-old bicyclist Dan Dole. “Oh, this is so great,” Dole said about pedaling across the new structure. “I love it!” He was accompanied by his 83-year-old father and fellow bicyclist Stuart Dole. The elder Dole was similarly effusive about the bridge, commenting on how it made that part of the city much more accessible. He remarked, “I’ll be coming down here a lot more now.”

The I-80 Bicycle and Pedestrian Overcrossing is one of the routes within the San Francisco Bay Trail. This interconnected trail system encompasses a total of 356 miles (573 kilometers) throughout the Golden State’s San Francisco Bay Area.

Photo Credit: Daniel Ramirez (licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/deed.en)

For more information on the I-80 Bicycle and Pedestrian Overcrossing, please check out https://www.aisc.org/nsba/prize-bridge-awards/prize-bridge-winners/i-80-bicycle-and-pedestrian-overcrossing/

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