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Oakland Museum of California to Administer Distribution of Salvaged Steel from Bay Bridge for Creative Reuse

EDITOR NOTE: Spokespeople for the project from OMCA, MTA/BATA, and CalTrans will be available for interview/comments Wednesday, June 3, from Noon to 3 pm PDT. Please contact Scott Horton (510-229-9739) or Kelly A. Koski (510-418-5725) to arrange phone or in-person.


Hi-res press images available for download here.


(Oakland, CA)—The Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) today announced that it will administer the distribution of salvaged steel from the ongoing demolition of the historic east span of the Oakland/San Francisco Bay Bridge. The Bay Bridge Steel Program has been created in response to significant public interest from Bay Area artists and creative communities to make steel from the bridge available for repurposing and reuse, preserving its legacy and visibility as a major landmark and historic icon via public projects throughout the State.


The Oakland Museum of California has agreed to work under the direction of the Toll Bridge Program Oversight Committee (TBPOC) with the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) and the Bay Area Toll Authority (BATA) to support and administer the process of distributing steel to be salvaged from the demolition for use in projects that creatively celebrate the original bridge and/or its history.


To this end, the museum has assembled a highly qualified selection committee with expertise in public art, art administration, landscape architecture, structural engineering and the history of the bridge to review proposed projects and award the available bridge steel. The museum has also engaged an independent program consultant, Leslie Pritchett, with extensive public art experience to help administer the Bay Bridge Steel Program.


“The Museum is delighted to have the opportunity to step forward and assist the creative community as a facilitator of this civic and public art process. The Bay Bridge is an important historical resource and a beloved historic landmark. The process of the Bridge’s demolition and the future use of the Bridge’s salvaged steel are important to the people of the Bay Area and the people of California, and this program will help honor and celebrate the history of this iconic structure, ” says Lori Fogarty, Director and CEO, Oakland Museum of California.

Application and information materials are available on the museum’s web site Applications will be considered for projects that are destined for the public realm within the state of California and that meet key criteria, including celebrating or evoking the bridge, its history, or its importance as an iconic structure. The selection committee will review proposals and award specific elements of cleaned and salvaged steel, at no charge, to successful applicants. It is important to note that this program was established to award grants of bridge steel; it does not provide for funding or ensure that projects will be accepted or approved by the responsible municipal agencies where they are planned; applicants will be responsible for addressing these and other additional requirements. Further information, including a list of elements to be salvaged from the historic bridge, is included in the application materials.

The deadline for the first round of applications will be October 1, 2015. It is anticipated that there will be two subsequent rounds of applications accepted, assuming material remains available. Please refer to the program’s information and application documents for additional details.

The Bay Bridge Steel Project partners hope that this exciting opportunity is embraced by a broad range of artists, architects, landscape architects, planners and other design professionals working in public contexts and looks forward to seeing projects celebrating the 1936 East Span of the Bay Bridge realized in communities throughout California.


More information about the Bay Bridge Steel Program, including complete details about how to apply, can be found on OMCA’s website at

The Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) brings together collections of art, history and natural science under one roof to tell the extraordinary stories of California and its people. OMCA’s groundbreaking exhibits tell the many stories that comprise California with many voices, often drawing on first-person accounts by people who have shaped California’s cultural heritage. Visitors are invited to actively participate in the Museum as they learn about the natural, artistic and social forces that affect the state and investigate their own role in both its history and its future. With more than 1.9 million objects, OMCA is a leading cultural institution of the Bay Area and a resource for the research and understanding of California’s dynamic cultural and environmental heritage.


The Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) is at 1000 Oak Street, at 10th Street, in Oakland. OMCA is situated between downtown Oakland and Lake Merritt.  Museum admission is $15 general; $10 seniors and students with valid ID, $6 youth ages 9 to 17, and free for Members and children 8 and under. OMCA offers onsite underground parking and is conveniently located one block from the Lake Merritt BART station, on the corner of 10th Street and Oak Street. The accessibility ramp is located at the new 1000 Oak Street main entrance. For more information, visit


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