Point of Interest

Harbour Bridge

Australia / The Pacific

The Harbour Bridge crosses the harbour, uniting the city (at Dawes Point)  with the Northern Shore (at Missions Point).  It was built between 1923 and 1932, a steel arch bridge which takes rail, motor vehicles, bicycles and pedestrians.  On account of its arch design, it is sometimes called ‘The Coathanger.’  It has become the iconic image for Sydney, along with the Opera House, and from the bridge, on New Year’s Eve, there are light shows, with images flashed across the globe.  The bridge was designed by John Bradfield (1867-1943), who also oversaw its construction.  The building of the bridge coincided with the construction of the underground system.

The design was partly inspired by the Tyne Bridge in Newcastle-upon-Tyne and the Hell Gate Bridge in New York.  The arch is made of 28-panel arch tresses and held together by 6 million rivets.  There are pylons at each end.  The work of constructing was undertaken by the British engineering firm, Dorman Long.  The Bridge was formally opened with a speech from Sir Philip Game (1876-1961), Governor of New South Wales, amongst others, and a ribbon-cutting at the southern end by J.T. Lang (1876-1975), Premier of New South Wales.

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