Skip To Content

    20 Facts About The Sydney Harbour Bridge

    It's the coathanger's 82nd birthday today. Which is weird because it doesn't look a year older than 21.

    1. The bridge was first opened in 1932.

    State Library / Via acmssearch.sl.nsw.gov.au

    2. It contains 6 million hand driven rivets.

    Flickr: statelibraryofnsw / Creative Commons

    3. When it opened it cost a car six pence to cross.

    State Library NSW / Via acmssearch.sl.nsw.gov.au

    4. A horse and rider cost 3 pence.

    State Library NSW / Via acmssearch.sl.nsw.gov.au

    5. It now costs $3.30 and you can't take horses onto it.

    Siwawut/Siwawut

    6. The Sydney Harbour Bridge is the world's largest steel arch bridge.

    State Library NSW / Via acmssearch.sl.nsw.gov.au

    7. It is 1149 meters long.

    Flickr: statelibraryofnsw / Creative Commons

    8. In 1932, 96 steam locomotives were positioned in various ways to test the load capacity of the Bridge.

    State Library NSW / Via acmssearch.sl.nsw.gov.au

    9. All the steel used to build the Harbour Bridge weighs 52,800 tonnes.

    State Library NSW / Via acmssearch.sl.nsw.gov.au

    10. The steel was 79% imported from England and 21% from Australian sources.

    11. The four pylons on either side are completely decorative.

    David Freund/David Freund

    12. 272,000 litres of paint were required to give the Bridge its initial three coats.

    State Library NSW / Via acmssearch.sl.nsw.gov.au

    13. Paul Hogan was a rigger on the bridge before he became famous.

    14. It took 1,400 men eight years to build the bridge.

    State Library NSW / Via acmssearch.sl.nsw.gov.au

    15. 16 people died in the construction of the bridge.

    State Library NSW / Via acmssearch.sl.nsw.gov.au

    16. The bridge is 134 metres above sea level.

    eddiewong/eddiewong

    17. 800 families living in the planned path of the Harbour Bridge were displaced without compensation.

    State Library NSW / Via acmssearch.sl.nsw.gov.au

    18. The top of the arch rises and falls about 180mm due to changes in temperature.

    State Library NSW / Via acmssearch.sl.nsw.gov.au

    19. The Harbour Bridge's original cost was $4.2 million.

    zetter/zetter

    20. It took 55 years to pay off.

    State Library NSW / Via acmssearch.sl.nsw.gov.au

    BuzzFeed Daily

    Keep up with the latest daily buzz with the BuzzFeed Daily newsletter!

    Newsletter signup form