Bridge Fix A Winner

Department of Transportation and Public Works (to Oct. 23 2007)

April 20, 2004 3:57 PM

The three-year, $15-million project to repair the Seal Island
Bridge -- a vital link for Cape Breton motorists and industry --
received honours from Lt.-Gov. Myra Freeman today, April 20.

The Department of Transportation and Public Works shared the
Lieutenant Governor's Award for Engineering Excellence with
consultants CBCL Limited of Halifax for the major overhaul of the
province's third largest bridge.

"This was a complex and challenging construction project that has
added several decades to the useful life of this magnificent
bridge," said Transportation and Public Works Minister Ron
Russell. "Everyone involved in the planning and construction of
this important project should be very proud of this award."

Forty years of wear and tear from traffic, and exposure to wind
and salt spray, necessitated a major overhaul of the Seal Island
Bridge. The road deck needed complete replacement, and the steel
truss work needed reinforcement.

"This project exemplified co-operation, with a high-tech design
that more than met expectations in terms of minimizing traffic
disruption," said Alan Perry, president of CBCL Limited. "With a
resourceful contractor, All Steel Coatings, and subcontractors,
Strescon Limited and Marid Industries Limited, we were able to
meet stringent tolerance and quality requirements, and satisfy a
department of transportation interested in applying new
techniques to affect improvements in the durability of Nova
Scotia's highway infrastructure."

The bridge is a critical link in the province's highway system,
carrying more than 7,500 cars a day in peak periods. Closing it
would have created detours up to three hours long. Engineers
solved the problem by using precast concrete panels that could be
placed onto the bridge one at a time. The panels were cast at an
offsite plant under ideal conditions for quality control, then
trucked to the bridge and set in place with boom trucks.

This technique allowed the bridge team to keep one lane open to
traffic except for occasional, brief closures. A communications
program kept motorists informed of expected bridge delays, and
the bridge team worked closely with fire, police, and ambulance
services to ensure speedy crossings in emergencies.

"That the majority of the work on this most complex and difficult
bridge reconstruction project was carried out by Nova Scotia
companies is a reflection of the engineering and construction
excellence in our province," said Mr. Russell.

The bridge, which spans the Great Bras d'Or Channel between New
Harris and Boularderie Centre, was originally opened in 1961 as
part of the Trans-Canada Highway system.


FOR BROADCAST USE:

     The three year, fifteen-million dollar overhaul of the Seal

Island Bridge on Cape Breton Island received a special award

today (April 20th).

     The Lieutenant Governor's Award for Engineering Excellence

was presented to the Department of Transportation and Public

Works and C-B-C-L Limited.

     Transportation and Public Works Minister Ron Russell says it

was a complex and challenging construction project, and everyone

involved in the planning and construction should be proud of the

award.

     The bridge is a critical link in the province's highway

system, carrying more than 75-hundred cars a day in peak

periods.

     The Seal Island Bridge spans the Great Bras d'Or Channel

between New Harris and Boularderie Centre.

-30-

Contact: Dan Davis
         Transportation and Public Works
         902-424-8978
         E-mail: davisds@gov.ns.ca

         Janet Williams
         CBCL Limited, Consulting Engineers
         902-421-7241


jal         April 20, 2004      3:56 P.M.