The Golden Gate Bridge Highway and Transportation District temporarily closes the Golden Gate Bridge until Monday to install a $30 million moveable barrier between opposite traffic flows.
The Golden Gate Bridge was closed to traffic over the weekend as crews installed a movable median barrier designed to prevent head-on collisions. The bridge closed to traffic at a minute after midnight Saturday and is scheduled to remain shut down until 4 a.m. Monday. The $30 million barrier will replace the yellow plastic pylons that bridge workers used to place in the middle of the bridge by hand to separate traffic flowing in opposite directions — tiny barriers that could make driving in the inner lanes of the bridge a hair-raising experience. On Saturday, crews worked to install 3,500 separate pieces of the barrier in what Ewa Bauer, the bridge’s engineering director, said was exacting, highly choreographed work. The individual pieces of the barrier are connected with large steel pins. Starting Monday, bridge crews will use new “zipper trucks” to lift, shove and place the concrete segments into position and reconfigure the lanes as needed, instead of placing pylons by hand. Built by Lindsay Transportation Systems, similar “road zippers” are in use on bridges such as the span to Coronado Island in San Diego. While the bridge is closed to private vehicles, Golden Gate Transit buses are operating on regular schedules across the bridge. [...] Golden Gate Bridge spokeswoman Priya Clemens said Saturday ridership was no higher than usual and buses ran on time, despite having to navigate a maze of construction activity. Tideline, a water taxi service, is also running a loop between Pier 1½ in San Francisco to Sausalito and Tiburon from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday and 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday.