Bridging Us All: Year-long Celebration Honors "The People's Bridge"

For Immediate Release
November 15, 2011

Year-long celebration honors “the people’s bridge” with enhanced visitor experience and exciting series of community tributes and public events

SAN FRANCISCO, CA: In preparing for the 75th anniversary of the Golden Gate Bridge next year, the Golden Gate Bridge Highway & Transportation District, and the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy, in partnership with the National Park Service (NPS) and the Presidio Trust, are moving forward with a robust program of improvements to enhance the visitor experience at the iconic span. The year-long anniversary celebration also features 75 community tributes and a grand public festival along the waterfront at Crissy Field in the Golden Gate National Parks on May 27, 2012.

As a lasting legacy to the Bridge and the national parklands that anchor it, The Parks Conservancy and NPS are working to significantly expand opportunities for visitors to discover the rich history and innovation behind of one of the world’s greatest engineering marvels. Visitor improvements include construction of a new 3,500 sq. ft. Golden Gate Bridge Pavilion to serve as a welcome and interpretive center; renovation of the historic Round House into a visitor staging and education center; upgrades to the classic art deco-designed Bridge Café; and enhancements to the Bridge Plaza and the surrounding parklands within the Golden Gate Parks.

New planned public programs feature guided tours of the Bridge, including the first-ever Night Tours; and a high-tech “green screen” that will provide a picture-perfect backdrop of the Bridge even on the foggiest of San Francisco days. The new Pavilion will house an expanded Golden Gate Bridge Shop highlighting more than 120 new interpretive items; and a menu featuring locally grown and produced food for visitors in the renovated Bridge Café. Other visitor enhancements are underway along the popular Coastal Trail and Bay Trail, including new way-finding and interpretive signage and improved public access; and two all-new scenic overlooks will provide spectacular new vantage points from which to view the Bridge and surrounding area.

A key foundation of the anniversary year are the “75 Tributes to the Bridge” being presented by a diverse range of Community Partners. Responding to a call issued by the Parks Conservancy this summer for nonprofit, community-based organizations and public agencies to join in honoring the Bridge, the resulting set of tributes represents an outpouring of affection for the beloved span from a wide array of Bay Area civic, cultural, and educational organizations. Beginning in January and continuing throughout the year, programs include exhibits, lectures, performances, films, contests, tours, and a variety of other activities.

Last but not least, a spectacular public celebration will be held from Fort Point through Pier 39 along the waterfront on Sunday May 27, 2012. Currently under development, the event will recall the historic “Golden Gate Bridge Fiesta” when the Bridge opened on May 27, 1937. A number of surprise special guests and performances will join in commemorating the Bridge’s official 75th birthday.

The complete schedule of 75th anniversary programs and events, as well as updated progress reports and visuals on the construction and visitor improvements, is available at

Media Contacts

David Shaw, Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy 415-561-3064,
Mary Currie, Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District 415-317-2222,

The Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District and the Parks Conservancy have scheduled a series of Media Briefings to provide journalists with behind-the-scenes access and background information on the history, engineering, visitor improvements and public programs surrounding the 75th anniversary.

The first briefing will be held on January 19, 2011 and address Golden Gate Bridge Engineering and History, from Chief Engineer Joseph Strauss’ bridge design and his team, to the bond election and the challenges of the original construction, to improvements made on the span since 1937. All Media Briefings will be held at the Bridge from 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. and include opportunities for interviews, photographs and site tours.

More Media Briefings will be scheduled in the coming months.



About the Golden Gate Bridge 75th Anniversary
The 75th Anniversary of the Golden Gate Bridge is a project of the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District and the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy in collaboration with the National Park Service and The Presidio Trust. The year-long celebration and visitor services improvements are funded by private contributions, with major underwriting provided by Wells Fargo, Genentech, HP, and Kaiser Permanente. Anniversary events include The Golden Gate Festival along the San Francisco waterfront on May 27, 2012; 75 Tributes to the Bridge, a year-long series of public programs presented throughout the Bay Area; renovation of the historic Round House and construction of a new visitor Pavilion; and enhancements to the Bridge Plaza and Golden Gate National Recreation Area parklands on both sides of the span. For additional information and all public inquiries, please visit

About the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy
The Parks Conservancy is the nonprofit membership organization created to preserve the Golden Gate National Parks, enhance the experiences of park visitors, and build a community dedicated to conserving the parks for the future. The Conservancy is an authorized “cooperating association” of the National Park Service, and is one of more than 70 such nonprofit organizations working with national parks around the country. To learn more, please visit or call (415) 561-3000.

About the National Park Service
The National Park Service (NPS) is a federal agency within the U.S. Department of the Interior charged with managing the preservation and public use of America’s most significant natural, scenic, historic, and cultural treasures. The NPS manages the Golden Gate National Parks, as well as 394 other park sites across the U.S. For more information, visit or call (415) 561-4700.