14473 | Construction of Lions Gate Bridge

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Construction of Lions Gate Bridge
Alexis MacKintosh
2001, 21st century
27 x 40 cm
This artefact belongs to: © Alexis MacKintosh/Vox Veritas Pictures
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Keys to History

Amazingly, most of the bridge-replacement work took place at night so that the daily flow of 70,000 vehicles could continue uninterrupted. The decision to follow this complex timetable -- thought to be the first such plan in the world -- indicates the bridge's importance as a transportation link. American Bridge/Surespan, a joint venture, won the $86.5-million contract to execute this logistical feat. During the work, the bridge was closed daily from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m., as well as on a few weekends. Forty-seven deck sections, about 20 m long and weighing 106 t, were progressively installed from north to south. A jacking traveller provided the continuous link on the bridge, besides lifting and lowering the sections. The job took one year, from the night of September 9 to 10, 2000, to the night of September 29 to 30, 2001. Completed without major traffic disruptions, it was hailed as a tremendous engineering success.

  • What

    This nighttime close-up shows a bridge section being lowered down to a barge in order to be replaced.

  • Where

    The piece in question is deck section 23, located in the middle of the span.

  • When

    Since the jacking traveller is in the middle of the span, the photo was likely taken halfway through the year of replacement work -- in the spring of 2001.

  • Who

    Photographer Alexis Mackintosh took this picture from a helicopter as part of her assignment with Air Digitale to document the bridge-replacement work.