We celebrate the anniversaries of bridges to honor the ways they connect us: they enable our livelihoods as we commute, they help us escape the hustle and bustle when we need to get away and they greet us with open arms when we return home. They become symbols of towns and cities and, by standing for the places we call home, help us to connect with one another as well.
On March 19th, Sydney, Australia, celebrates the 81st anniversary of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. The bridge was constructed in 1932 to connect the North Shore to the Sydney central business district. The bridge, affectionately known to locals as “the coathanger” for its distinctive shape, supports a six-lane highway, a railway and paths for both pedestrian and bike traffic—and at 160 feet (48.8 meters) wide, it’s one of the widest long-span bridges in the world. Until 1967, it was also Sydney’s tallest building with a maximum height of 440 feet (134 meters) at the top of the arch. The bridge is also a central part of Sydney’s annual New Year’s Eve celebration as the centerpiece of the firework displays.