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Port Severn Bridge

Bridge 60

Port Severn Bridge

Primary Photographer(s): Nathan Holth and Rick McOmber

Bridge Documented: July 21, 2012

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Key Facts

Facility Carried / Feature Intersected
Port Severn Road Bridge Over Trent-Severn Waterway
Location
Port Severn: Simcoe County, Ontario: Canada
Structure Type
Metal 8 Panel Rivet-Connected Warren Pony Truss, Movable: Swing and Approach Spans: Concrete T-Beam, Fixed
Construction Date and Builder / Engineer
1915 By Builder/Contractor: Hamilton Bridge Company of Hamilton, Ontario

Technical Facts

Rehabilitation Date
Not Available or Not Applicable
Main Span Length
Not Available
Structure Length
Not Available
Roadway Width
Not Available
Spans
1 Main Span(s) and 9 Approach Span(s)
NBI Number
Not Applicable

Historic Significance Rating (HSR)

Bridge Documentation

This bridge has been altered, resulting in a severe loss of historic integrity and significance!

This heritage bridge's swing span was demolished and replaced with a modern bridge simulating the general appearance of the heritage bridge!

Note: The technical facts and Historic Significance Rating refer to this bridge prior to replacement of the swing span.

This bridge consists of a series of concrete t-beam spans that share a common substructure with a dam, and their is a pony truss swing span over the canal. There are locks at this point for boats. The concrete t-beam spans remain original and largely unaltered. The swing span however was completely demolished and replaced. The replacement bridge does a very good job of simulating the appearance of the original heritage swing span, including even the use of built-up beams with v-lacing, something not normally used in modern construction. However, the bridge uses bolts instead of rivets. Such a project cannot be called heritage bridge preservation, nor can the replacement bridge be considered to have any heritage value or significance. However, it does offer more interpretive value than a typical modern bridge would offer. The bridge does simulate the appearance of the heritage bridge, and it continues to swing open for boats allowing visitors to see how the heritage swing bridge would have moved. However note that all mechanical mechanisms on the modern bridge appear to use hydraulics, which the heritage bridge did not. Furthermore, it is worth considering: did the bridge really need to be replaced. Severe deterioration of the heritage bridge seemed, like many deteriorated truss bridges, to be largely limited to the bottom chord and perhaps the flooring system. If a rehabilitation project had been designed that replaced the bottom chord and flooring system in kind, while simply repairing the rest of the truss, such a project could have been deemed a heritage preservation project, rather than a demolition and replacement project. If carefully designed and executed, such a rehabilitation would have made the bridge like-new. There are remaining original swing bridges elsewhere on the Trent Severn Waterway. It is hoped that Port Severn Bridge does not set a precedent, and instead rehabilitation and preservation is considered for surviving examples.

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Photo Galleries and Videos: Port Severn Bridge

 
View Photo Gallery
Bridge Photo-Documentation
Original / Full Size Photos
A collection of overview and detail photos. This gallery offers photos in the highest available resolution and file size in a touch-friendly popup viewer. Alternatively, Browse Without Using Viewer
View Photo Gallery
Bridge Photo-Documentation
Mobile Optimized Photos
A collection of overview and detail photos. This gallery features data-friendly, fast-loading photos in a touch-friendly popup viewer. Alternatively, Browse Without Using Viewer
View Video
Bridge Opening
Full Motion Video
Streaming video of the bridge. Also includes a higher quality downloadable video for greater clarity or offline viewing.
View Video
Bridge Closing
Full Motion Video
Streaming video of the bridge. Also includes a higher quality downloadable video for greater clarity or offline viewing.
View Video
Westbound Crossing
Full Motion Video
Streaming video of the bridge. Also includes a higher quality downloadable video for greater clarity or offline viewing.
View Video
Eastbound Crossing
Full Motion Video
Streaming video of the bridge. Also includes a higher quality downloadable video for greater clarity or offline viewing.

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Maps and Links: Port Severn Bridge

Coordinates (Latitude, Longitude):
44.803700,-79.720370

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