The 2.12-mile-long bridge that connects San Diego and Coronado Island is one of the world's most iconic landmarks. Built with a vertical clearance of 200 feet, it can accommodate the largest ships.
Like any great American landmark, the Coronado Bridge is full of urban legends. Among them is the idea that its architect, Robert Mosher, designed it to float if sections were knocked down. This is a bit nutty, but it's not true.
Mosher's design was a major step in building a bridge that would look good and be structurally sound. It used an orthotropic roadway to strengthen the structure, eliminating extra superstructures to disperse the weight of the deck.
When it came time to build the bridge, there were some things residents were worried about. First, the Navy had reservations about a bridge crossing over the bay. They were concerned about the impact a collapsed bridge could have on their fleet.
Second, they worried that people would jump off the bridge and kill themselves. They also worried about the safety of drivers on the east and west sides, which are both busy.
The Coronado Bridge was officially opened in 1969, but not before a number of controversy and debates had taken place. For example, locals were split over which city should get first billing in the bridge's name. Ultimately, the state favored geographical references and decided to call it the "San Diego-Coronado Bay Bridge."