“Bridges Connect Us,” Barbra Streisand unveils her new namesake bridge at the Academy Museum.

The Barbra Streisand Bridge, which connects the museum’s new Sphere Building and its historic Saban Building, was just unveiled. And the eponymous building honors the star.

In a statement to PEOPLE, Streisand, 79, said, “I like bridges because they connect us, just as the stories we tell in movies connect us and lead us to a deeper understanding of other people’s lives, as well as our own.” “It is my hope that being a part of a museum honoring the history of film will serve as inspiration for upcoming filmmakers,”

A star-studded gala was held by the Academy Museum last month to celebrate its opening, and everyone from Lady Gaga and Cher to Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks attended.

At the unveiling, Hanks told the press corps that having this film museum in Los Angeles is important. “As everyone is aware, amazing movies are produced all over the world. There are film museums in other cities as well, but in a city like Los Angeles, which was founded by the Motion Picture Academy, this one has to be the Parthenon of them. At the Academy, we have been discussing this for the better part of, I believe, twenty years. The outcome also surpasses our expectations by a factor of ten. It’s an amazing structure. It’s a fantastic, welcoming environment.

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