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Manitoba replacing Brandon’s First Street Bridge


October 26, 2015
By Andrew Macklin


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October 26, 2015 – A major investment in Manitoba’s largest western city is underway to build new bridges to replace the aging First Street Bridge in Brandon.

“The First Street Bridge is a major transportation route for Brandon’s growing population and thriving commercial sector,” said infrastructure and transportation minister Steve Ashton.  “When complete, the new bridge will safely carry 14,000 vehicles across the Assiniboine River each day for years to come.”

Motorists who use the First Street Bridge will see detours being built as the first step in reconstructing the new bridges, said Minister Ashton. He noted analysis by engineers determined it was prudent to replace the existing bridge, which was built in 1972, rather than undertake a major rehabilitation.

The northbound section is being demolished and rebuilt first, followed by the southbound side. One lane of traffic in each direction will be maintained at all times during construction. The existing four-lane design will be replaced with two separate bridges, with two lanes on each bridge. The new design includes a sidewalk on each side.

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The minister noted the first bridge is scheduled to be completed by November 2016, weather permitting, with the second bridge expected to be completed by November 2017. Minor site cleanup may take place in the early summer of 2018.

“The province has invested about $170 million in more than 50 projects in the Brandon area since 2007,” said municipal government minister Drew Caldwell. “These projects include rebuilding and resurfacing dozens of kilometres of roads, intersection improvements and bridge reconstruction to improve the safe and efficient movement of traffic in and around the Wheat City.”

The Manitoba government launched a five-year, $5.5-billion core infrastructure plan to stimulate the economy by improving provincial roads, highways, bridges and flood protection as well as helping municipalities improve their infrastructure. The Conference Board of Canada reviewed the plan and projected it would boost the provincial economy by $6.3 billion, hike exports by $5.3 billion and help create 58,900 jobs over five years.