The bridge was built in 1972 for the Bureau of Reclamation by Willamette-Western Corporation. It has not been repainted since that time. With approximately one million square feet of paintable surface, this will be quite an undertaking.
The Foresthill Bridge opened for traffic in 1973.
The bridge measures 2,428-feet from one side to the other.
At more than 730 feet above the American River, it is the highest bridge in California, the fourth highest in the United States, and the ninth highest bridge in the world.
This famous and scenic bridge can be seen in several movies. The scene that it is perhaps most known for is in the Movie “xXx” starring Vin Diesel. In this movie, Vin Diesel’s character drives a Corvette off the bridge, jumps from the car in mid-fall, then parachutes down to the American River Canyon. Foresthill Bridge can also be seen in the movies “Phantom” (1996), and “The Ugly Truth” (2009).
Foresthill Bridge is also commonly referred to as the Auburn-Foresthill Bridge, or simply the Auburn Bridge.
The Foresthill Bridge was originally constructed to accompany an Auburn Dam that was never built. The dam would have created a reservoir that would have innundated the original bridge.
The seismic retrofit will add approximately 2.2 million lbs. of steel to the bridge.
The new cat walk will also use another 350,450 lbs. of structural steel.
The bridge was built from each side outward, meeting in the middle.