Anzac Bridge

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Anzac Bridge
Anzac Bridge and Sydney harbour Bridge from Glebe Point.jpg
Coordinates 33°52′10″S 151°11′09″E / 33.86933°S 151.18578°E / -33.86933; 151.18578Coordinates: 33°52′10″S 151°11′09″E / 33.86933°S 151.18578°E / -33.86933; 151.18578
Carries 8 road lanes,
pedestrians and bicycles
CrossesJohnstons Bay
LocaleSydney, New South Wales, Australia (Map)
Official nameAnzac Bridge
Other name(s)New Glebe Island Bridge
Named forAustralian and New Zealand Army Corps
OwnerRoads and Maritime Services
Maintained byRoads and Maritime Services
DesignCable Stayed
Total length805 m (2,641 ft)[1]
Width32.2 m (105 ft 8 in)
Longest span345 m (1,132 ft)[1]
Construction costA$170 million[2]

The Anzac Bridge is an 8-lane cable-stayed bridge spanning Johnstons Bay between Pyrmont and Glebe Island (part of the suburb of Rozelle), close to the central business district of Sydney, Australia. The bridge forms part of the Western Distributor leading from the Sydney CBD and Cross City Tunnel to the Inner West and Northern Suburbs.

Historical Background[edit]

Glebe Island Bridge[edit]

There were two bridges over Johnstons Bay before the construction of the Anzac Bridge.

The first bridge was constructed as part of a project to move the abattoirs out of central Sydney, and to construct public abattoirs at Glebe Island.[3] The first pile of the original bridge was driven in October 1860.[4] The bridge was opened in 1862 and was a timber beam bridge 318.6 metres (1,045 feet 5 inches) long and 8.5 m (28 ft) wide with a 12 m (40 ft) swing section on the eastern side. It replaced a double steam punt crossing.[4]

The second Glebe Island Bridge was an electrically operated swing bridge opened in 1903, the year after the opening of the new Pyrmont Bridge over Sydney's Darling Harbour, which has a similar design. The bridge was designed by Percy Allan of the New South Wales Public Works Department who also designed the Pyrmont Bridge. Delays due to increasing traffic, which were exacerbated by having to close a major arterial road to allow the movement of shipping into Blackwattle Bay, led to the construction of the present-day Anzac Bridge. The 1903 bridge is still standing, but there is no access to pedestrians or vehicular traffic.

Anzac Bridge[edit]

Anzac Bridge pylons and cables

The stay cable design concept development and final design for the new bridge were carried out by the Roads & Traffic Authority of NSW and the construction by Baulderstone Pty. Ltd.[5] The bridge was opened to traffic on 3 December 1995 as the Glebe Island Bridge.[6]

The bridge was given its current name on Remembrance Day in 1998[7] to honour the memory of the soldiers of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (known as Anzacs) who served in World War I. An Australian Flag flies atop the eastern pylon and a New Zealand Flag flies atop the western pylon. A bronze memorial statue of an Australian Anzac soldier ("digger") holding a Lee–Enfield rifle in the "rest on arms reverse" drill position was placed on the western end of the bridge on Anzac Day in 2000. A statue of a New Zealand soldier was added to a plinth across the road from the Australian Digger, facing towards the east, and was unveiled by Prime Minister of New Zealand Helen Clark in the presence of Premier of New South Wales Morris Iemma on Sunday 27 April 2008.[8]


The bridge is 32.2 m (105 ft 8 in) wide and the main span is 345 m (1,132 ft) long. The reinforced concrete pylons are 69 m (226 ft) high and support the deck by two planes of stay cables. Initially the stay cables were plagued by vibrations which have since been resolved by the addition of thin stabilising cables between the stay cables.[citation needed]

There is a pedestrian path / bikeway that runs along the northern side of the bridge, making possible a leisurely 30-to-40-minute walk from Glebe Point Road, down Bridge Road, over the Bridge and round Blackwattle Bay back to Glebe Point Road.[citation needed]

The bridge can carry a maximum of 180,000 cars per day. It reached its maximum capacity in 2002, only seven years after it was finished.[citation needed]

The bridge is regularly patrolled by security guards as a counter-terrorism measure. Security cameras also monitor the walkway.[citation needed]

The bridge has a speed limit of 60 kilometres per hour (37 miles per hour): it was reduced from 70 km/h (43 mph) in January 2005.[9] Also prior to that date, the bridge had seven traffic lanes (4 eastbound, 3 westbound).

Originally, there were bus stops at the western end of the bridge, but they were removed because buses pulling out from the stops created a hazard as they merged with other traffic moving at (or close to) the speed limit. The Australian Anzac statue on the northern side of the bridge is adjacent to the former city-bound bus stop; the New Zealand Anzac statue was installed within the ramp area of the former stop on the southern side.

Use in popular culture[edit]

Given its close proximity to Sydney CBD, the bridge has been used in a number of artistic works.

Looking for Alibrandi film[edit]

The bridge was used in the Looking for Alibrandi (1999) movie scene where the title character, Josephine Alibrandi, and her date Jacob Coote rode across the bridge on Jacob's motorcycle.

It's Alright song[edit]

Deni Hines' song "It's Alright" (1995) features the nearly completed bridge in the music video group dance sequences, the filming of which taking place a few months before the bridge's December 1995 opening.

Purple Sneakers song[edit]

You Am I's song "Purple Sneakers" from the band's album Hi Fi Way (1995) opens with the lyric "Had a scratch only you could itch, underneath the Glebe Point bridge". The Glebe Island Bridge was still under construction when Tim Rogers wrote and recorded the song in 1994, with the bridge's name change to 'Anzac Bridge' not occurring until 1998.[7][10][11]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "ANZAC Bridge". Structurae. Retrieved 3 February 2010.
  2. ^
  3. ^ "REMOVAL OF THE SLAUGHTER HOUSES FROM SYDNEY". The Sydney Morning Herald. 22 October 1860. Retrieved 10 November 2010.
  4. ^ a b "COMMENCEMENT OF THE GLEBE ISLAND BRIDGE". The Sydney Morning Herald. 11 October 1860. Retrieved 10 November 2010.
  5. ^ Anzac Bridge at Structurae
  6. ^ "Anzac Bridge Sydney". February 2010. Archived from the original on 5 April 2008. Retrieved 3 April 2008.
  7. ^ a b "Anzac Bridge". NSW Office of Environment & Heritage. Retrieved 11 February 2019.
  8. ^ Samandar, Lema (27 April 2008). "Kiwi joins his little mate on Anzac Bridge watch". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 3 February 2010.
  9. ^ Transport for NSW. "Safer Roads NSW" (PDF). Retrieved 25 September 2015.
  10. ^ Jolly, Nathan (10 July 2017). "Which musical landmarks in Sydney should be recognised with plaques?". The Brag. Archived from the original on 13 July 2017. Retrieved 11 February 2019.
  11. ^ Cayley, A.H. (27 June 2013). "You Am I is the longest love affair I have ever had". Faster Louder. Archived from the original on 23 September 2013. Retrieved 11 February 2019.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 33°52′10″S 151°11′09″E / 33.869340°S 151.185780°E / -33.869340; 151.185780