Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Tens of thousands turn out to celebrate new 520 bridge

We want to thank all of you who helped us celebrate the new 520 bridge this weekend – it was a fun and exciting day and we were thrilled to see so many people out enjoying the longest floating bridge in the world.

It was thrilling seeing so many people soaking in the weather, the exhibits and the bridge itself. The ribbon cutting was an exciting official start to the day and experiences like the LEGO floating bridge, bridge passport and cutting a keepsake piece of the ribbon will be fun memories for years to come.

Official ribbon cutting with Gov. Jay Inslee

Visitors checking out the big LEGO floating bridge

Just like the bridge itself, the numbers this weekend were impressive:
  • An estimated 13,500 people ran or walked in the Saturday morning Fun Run, breaking the bridge in in style.
  • Between 25,000 to 30,000 people joined us on the bridge to watch the ribbon cutting, visit numerous exhibits and take in the views.
  • On Sunday, another 7,000 people rounded out the grand opening in the Emerald City Bike Ride.

All told, that's 50,000 people walking, biking, running and experiencing the new floating bridge before it opens to traffic later this month.

History in the Making
Despite some challenges, we are very happy to report there were no major injuries, medical issues or security problems. We’re pleased so many people got to enjoy the bridge safely and take part in a truly historic, unprecedented event.

Though there were long lines, visitors we spoke to on the bridge enjoyed the event and the chance to explore and celebrate the bridge before it opens to traffic and to visit with engineers and learn about the new bridge. Children seemed particularly thrilled with the hands-on activities, including several Science, Technology, Engineering and Math exhibits as well as the chance to climb into Broom Hilda, the bridge’s new state-of-the art street sweeper.

We would also like to thank all of the partners and sponsors that made this free to the public event possible. Our presenting sponsors were Microsoft and Delta Air Lines, along with KIRO 7 as our media partner. We had a total of 55 sponsors that all contributed to the success of the weekend—both monetarily and with activities and staff to talk with our tens of thousands of visitors.

We loved seeing people enjoy our bridge this weekend and again thank everyone who participated and helped us celebrate this Guinness World Record bridge.

Check out our Flickr album for the event: https://www.flickr.com/photos/wsdot/albums/72157666587343721