Eighteen months after the June 2013 flood destroyed three pedestrian bridges located in Calgary’s southwest along the Elbow River, the first of the three bridges will re-open. On Sun., Nov. 23, at 12 noon, Mayor Nenshi will cut a ribbon officially opening the bridge. Calgarians are invited to be part of this opening celebration and be one of the first to cross the new bridge.
“Because they were such an important transportation link in the community, and for all Calgarians, The City of Calgary made it a priority to replace these bridges ,” says His Worship, Mayor Naheed Nenshi. “The re-opening of these bridges represents a very tangible example of how The City, and the communities most affected by the flooding, continues to recover from the 2013 flood.”
In addition to being replaced in record time, the bridges have been built to today’s engineering standards, which are much more stringent than when the original bridges were built (Rideau Park Bridge was the oldest being built in 1934). “Higher engineering standards, combined with flood resistant design features, will help with the bridges’ ability to not only withstand any future floods but, in general, last a long time,“ says project manager Charmaine Buhler. The new bridges have been built to have a 100-year life span.
“For example, the new bridges are higher than the old bridges, which will allow more water to flow through, plus the new bridge decks are above the level of the 2013 flood. The bridge supports can withstand high river flow, and the concrete decks are able to withstand debris impacts,” adds Buhler.
Anyone attending the event is asked to use the west side entrance to Sandy Beach Park. The road leading into the park is at 50 Ave and 14A St. S.W. There is limited parking in the park. People are encouraged to ride bikes and walk to the event. All dogs must be on lea
The Rideau Roxboro Bridge will open Nov. 28 and The Riverdale Avenue Bridge is expected to open soon after. The landscaping for all three bridges will be finished in the spring/summer of 2015. To view time lapse sequences of the major components of the re-building process, such as the installation of the towers, suspension cables, and bridge decks, and for other project information, please visit www.calgary.ca/elbowbridges.