June 13, 2019
The main CN Rail line runs through peninsular Halifax in a below grade rail-cut with numerous concrete arch road bridges crossing overhead. Many of these bridges are in poor condition and in need of extensive rehab work or replacement.
One of the more notable spans is the 100-year-old, four-lane bridge under Quinpool Road — one of two main thoroughfares connecting the peninsula to the Armdale Roundabout and the City’s Mainland South districts. A 4.5-month road closure and rehab project was planned for this bridge, but the water and waste water pipes that ran through it could not be accommodated in the rehab design. A separate utility bridge was required before the rehab project could begin.
Algonquin Bridge won the contract to design and supply a 45 m galvanized steel span with a maintenance access walkway.
Utility bridge was pre-purchased by owner to help accelerate timeline
The closure of Quinpool Road was timed to coincide with the university summer season, when traffic would be lighter. It was set to begin on April Fools’ Day, but it was no laughing matter for the 25,000+ motorists crossing the bridge every day who now had to find alternate routes.
The owner, Halifax Water, ordered the bridge ahead of time and stored it in the adjacent park to be sure it was ready for their winter project to install the span and divert the utility lines across it.
As usual, the Algonquin Bridge team was flexible and accessible throughout the project phases. We provided a lot of information ahead of time to the engineering consultant, Hatch, including preliminary bridge reactions. The contractors were actually bidding on the installation tender as we were fabricating the bridge at our Thorndale, Ontario, plant. We were able to provide support and answer any questions. Our bridge and the rerouted utility lines were completed on schedule and the main concrete arch rehab project was able to start on time.
Algonquin is becoming very familiar with the Halifax rail cut bridges. We supplied a similar utility pipe bridge at Tower Road over ten years ago and we will be providing temporary bridges for two more rail-cut bridge rehab projects in the year ahead.