Bay Bridge Closure: Ready for Labor Day Weekend

    August 28, 2013
    Bennett Rieser
    Comments are off for this post.

A San Francisco ABC News local affiliate reported that the San Francisco Bay Bridge is going to be closed down for five days with all commuting traffic between San Francisco and Oakland detoured to other routes by the California Highway Patrol.

During the closure, BART will be running its transit system 24 hours a day with hourly scheduled overnight trains covering 14 stations. BART’s traffic increased by 30 percent the last time the bridge was closed.

BART’s spokesperson, Jim Allison, said that on “Thursday and Friday it’s going to be very busy so we’re encouraging people to either use the ferries or modify their plans not to travel in the peak 8-8:30 in the morning and 5-5:30 in the afternoon.”

If you want to drive yourself and need to get around the gridlock, ABC’s Waze traffic flow app for your smartphone may help you navigate the commute more smoothly, and the more people who use it, the more accurate the traffic data will be.

The San Francisco Bay Bridge sees nearly 300,000 vehicles a day, and this weekend would be the fourth time in seven years that the bridge had to be shut down. The spokesman for the bridge, Andrew Gordon, said that the new crossing will open either late Monday or early on Tuesday, but exact details have yet to be hammered out.

The California Department of Transportation or Caltrans, has said that they will begin tearing down the old span bridge piece by piece. In nine months, most Californians will notice the old bridge mostly gone; however, to remove the entire foundation down to the mud line would take an additional two years after the bridge’s removal.

The “chain-cutting ceremony” that would officially re-open the bridge is scheduled for 3 pm on Labor Day, but Governor Jerry Brown (D-CA) will not be present, instead choosing to be with his wife in Michigan.

The AP via the Denver Post has some advice from the spokesman from the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, John Goodwin, who advises commuters to simply “be patient, wherever you’re going… The Bay Area keeps moving. It just becomes more sluggish.”

[Image via a Youtube video about retrofitting the bridge]
  • Melanie

    Check your headline. Do you mean Labor Day?

    • John

      They are closing it to tear down and plan to reopen in nine months on Memorial Day 2014.

      • Bennett Rieser

        I did! I absolutely screwed that up guys, my bad.

        Just for internet comedy purposes, my own father fails to remember the difference between Memorial Day and Labor Day! Must run in the genes. :)

  • Kreg

    There are no editors anymore. Don’t write anything if you can’t even get the correct summer holiday in your headline. I guess that is what a college education gets you these days.

  • Christopher Hall

    Yes, I agree with Melanie. Do you know which holiday is on Septemeber 2? Also, there is another Bay Bridge in the U.S.- this one over the Chesapeake Bay which affects tens of thousands of people in Maryland, Delaware, Virginia, etc.
    Suggested replacement headline:
    SF Bay Brige Closure: Ready for Labor Day Weekend

  • c

    I guess it is going to be closed for a LONG time. August 2013 through May 2014

  • Lori

    Am I missing something or can none of you actually read? NOWHERE in this article does it say anything about Memorial day. It says it will take about 9 months to tear it down and people will notice it mostly gone at that point, but it clearly says it will be shut down for Labor day (which IS the holiday coming up). I even re-read a few times thinking I was crazy. This article isn’t bad…for horrible articles just read the Yahoo articles.

    • Bennett Rieser

      When I first posted the article, I accidentally wrote “Memorial Weekend” instead of “Labor Day Weekend” in the headline, and some of the commentators were correct in getting on me about my error. In reality, I was just confusing the holidays; the bridge is to be closed for Labor Day weekend, it will re-open on Labor Day (or shortly after), and then by Memorial Day 2014, the remains of the old bridge should be mostly gone. That is all.