Before the Auckland Harbour Bridge was built, the North Shore was a mostly rural area of about 50,000 people, with few jobs and a growth rate half that of Auckland south of the Waitematā Harbour.
Opening up the area via a new road would prove crucial for allowing for further expansion of Auckland.
The large steel girder sections were partially pre-assembled, then floated into place on construction barges.
The bridge took four years to build. Hundreds of labourers were involved, including 180 men sent out from the United Kingdom.
It wasn't all smooth sailing, with workers' strikes affecting the build in 1956 and 1957. But finally, in early 1959, the last pieces of the grand structure were being put in place.
The bridge opened opened on 30 May 1959 with an open day, during which more than 100,000 people crossed the bridge on foot.
The Auckland Harbour Bridge was initially a toll road, costing two shillings and six pence to cross.
Believe it or not, this below photo was taken just two weeks after it opened – safe to say it was an immediate hit.
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