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Lethbridge Viaduct

High Level Bridge

Lethbridge Viaduct

Primary Photographer(s): C. Hanchey, CC BY-NC 2.0, flickr.com/photos/21953562@N07/

Bridge Documented: May 31, 2015

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Facility Carried / Feature Intersected
Railroad (Canadian Pacific) Over Oldman River
Lethbridge: Lethbridge County, Alberta: Canada
Structure Type
Metal 8 Panel Rivet-Connected Warren Deck Truss, Fixed and Approach Spans: Metal Deck Girder, Fixed
Construction Date and Builder / Engineer
1909 By Builder/Contractor: Canadian Bridge Company of Walkerville, Ontario
Rehabilitation Date
Not Available or Not Applicable
Main Span Length
167.0 Feet (50.9 Meters)
Structure Length
5,327.0 Feet (1623.7 Meters)
Roadway Width
Not Available
1 Main Span(s) and 66 Approach Span(s)
Inventory Number
Not Applicable

Historic Significance Rating (HSR)
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Bridge Documentation

The 314 ft high, 5,327 ft long bridge was built 1906-09 by the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR). The bridge was manufactured by the Canadian Bridge Company. Also known locally as the High Level Bridge. The bridge is completely composed of deck plate girder spans, including over the river, with a single larger deck truss span toward one end of the bridge, which is designated the main span because it is the largest span. The mile long railroad bridge was designated as a National Historic Civil Engineering Site by the Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (CSCE). The CSCE description states: "The Lethbridge Viaduct is the highest and longest steel railway bridge of its type in the world, rising 314 feet from the river bed and extending 5,327 feet in length. The design chosen was a steel viaduct of 44 plate girder spans 67 ft. 1 in. long, 22 plate girder spans 98 ft. 10 in. and one riveted deck lattice truss span 167 ft. long, all supported on 33 braced, riveted steel towers. The main spans were constructed using a large erection traveler. Work commenced in 1906 and was completed in 1909."

Above: Historical photo showing bridge construction.

Above: Historical photo showing bridge construction.


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