|Books on the New East Bay Bridge|
Two recent books shed light on this project. 'Bay Bridge, History and Design of a New Icon' was written by an architect involved in the project (Donald MacDonald) with help from the writer Ira Nadel. 'Remaking the San Francisco - Oakland Bay Bridge' was written by an adjunct professor at the University of California at Berkeley in Transportation Planning (Karen Trapenberg Frick) who explores the rebuilding of the bridge as a 'MegaProject,' a strange creature that needs to be better understood.
The original plan was to build a simple skyway, two miles of prestressed concrete box girder spans that provided a seismically safe structure to resist the next big earthquake (see figure above by MacDonald for his book). However, all of the different groups were pushing for a signature span for this important structure. Perhaps if Caltrans had been allowed to build their 'plain vanilla' bridge, billions of dollars could have been saved.
Readers interested in studying how big bridge projects can take on a life of their own are encouraged to read these interesting books.