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Macdonell Street Bridge

Allan's Bridge

Macdonell Street Bridge

Primary Photographer(s): Nathan Holth and Rick McOmber

Bridge Documented: July 19, 2013

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Key Facts

Facility Carried / Feature Intersected
Macdonell Street (Abandoned Alignment) Over Speed River
Guelph: Wellington County, Ontario: Canada
Construction Date and Builder / Engineer
By Builder/Contractor: Hamilton Bridge Company of Hamilton, Ontario

Technical Facts

Rehabilitation Date
Not Available or Not Applicable
Main Span Length
60 Feet (18.3 Meters)
Structure Length
120 Feet (36.7 Meters)
Roadway Width
24 Feet (7.32 Meters)
2 Main Span(s)
NBI Number
Not Applicable

Historic Significance Rating (HSR)
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Bridge Documentation

This is a bridge in a most unusual location. It was built directly beneath a railway bridge, allowing Macdonell Street to cross the Speed River directly under the railway. Macdonell Street approached the bridge by passing between the stone columns of the railway bridge. Today, this bridge has been abandoned, having been bypassed by a new bridge directly to the west.

It is not known exactly when this bridge was constructed. The Grand River Heritage Bridge Inventory lists a ca. 1930 construction date. Knowing the exact date would be important for this bridge, because it uses a railing panel design that was used often in Ontario. However, in neighboring Michigan a suspiciously similar railing panel design was also used, suggesting that Michigan and Ontario perhaps got ideas for bridge railing design from one another. This bridge is unusual however because its concrete railing posts have a different inset design in them from most Ontario bridges with this railing panel design. Interestingly however, the railing posts on this bridge are similar to the earliest railing posts coupled with this railing panel design found on Michigan bridges built between 1932 and 1939. The big mystery is who invented the railing design first, Ontario or Michigan? Read more about the railing design here. If it can be proven that this bridge was built before 1932, it would suggest that Ontario came up with the railing design first. In regards to Ontario's use of the railing design, this bridge's metal panels differ slightly from the design of the later bridges using this railing design in that the top of the metal panels is composed of pipe, rather than a custom-shaped design found on later bridges.


Photo Galleries and Videos: Macdonell Street Bridge

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