Bill To Rename Rainbow Tunnel After Robin Williams Passes California Assembly

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Photo: Michael LoRusso / Flickr

No matter how long you've lived in the Bay Area, heading over the Golden Gate Bridge still feels like a dream. As if the stunning views and iconic International Orange towers weren't enough, one is greeted by a charming tunnel with a rainbow archway en route to Sausalito. Most people call it the Waldo Tunnel (named after William Waldo, a politician who ran for governor way back in 1853) or simply the "rainbow tunnel," but that's likely to change soon.

After Robin Williams' death last summer, a petition quickly cropped up on to have the tunnel renamed in his honor. Julie Wainwright, the woman behind the effort, explained her reasoning: "To remember and honor the very important citizen and world renowned entertainer, Robin Williams, for the joy he brought to the world and to bring awareness to the silent illness that eventually took his life."

Assemblyman Marc Levine, a Democrat from San Rafael, took it from there, introducing a bill to the California Assembly to make the name change official. And on Thursday, by a unanimous vote of 77-0, they approved the bill, sending it to the Senate’s Transportation Committee.

Levine had this to say about Williams and his connection to the Bay Area: "Robin Williams grew up and attended Redwood High School in Larkspur, went to College of Marin. Also of course launched his comedy career in the clubs of San Francisco. This tunnel really connects the San Francisco and Marin communities and is a perfect way of tying those parts of his life together.”

Sorry, there's something in my eye. I'm going to go take care of that now. R.I.P. Robin.