September 24, 2013

New AC Transit bus first to cross renovated Bay Bridge


Photo courtesy AC Transit

Photo courtesy AC Transit

An AC Transit bus was one of the first to cross the new span of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge (known locally as the Bay Bridge). 
 
Construction originally began on the bridge in 1933.  It opened for traffic on November 12, 1936 — six months before the Golden Gate Bridge — and served the region well for 80 years.

But with the wear of time, the old Bay Bridge was forced to give way to the new, self-anchored suspension bridge that began to be built in 2002 and opened on September 2 as the world’s widest bridge.

The agency commissioned one of its freshly acquired “Better Ride” New Flyer 2200 series, 60-foot coaches for the opening festivities.

“For our bus operator, Sidney Raglund, it was a privilege and very exciting to be a part of this monumental event,’’ said AC Transit GM David Armijo. “Our bus agency was elated — thrilled to have our beautiful new bus roll across the new Bay Bridge. But even more gratifying is that we were also the first public transit agency to cross the span with passengers who thoroughly enjoyed the experience.”

In all, five other AC Transit bus operators drove coaches as part of the opening ceremonies to commemorate the new Bay Bridge. The operators drove 2200 series New Flyers and a new 1300 series Gillig coach, shuttling political and community dignitaries to and from the inauguration event.

AC Transit captured this “first morning commute,” videotaping the trans-bay trip from the East Bay to San Francisco on the Line F bus.

To watch video of the trip and hear the passengers’ experience, click here.

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