This bridge appears to be a continuous reinforced concrete slab type bridge whose superstructure is arched in shape. The arch may increase the strength as well as the vertical clearance, but it also greatly enhances the aesthetic value of the bridge versus a traditional concrete slab which tends to be rather ugly in appearance. This particular example is designed such that there is a single span over each direction of KH-401 travel, and then a single half-arch shaped span at each end of the bridge. This design, especially given the depth of the arch shape, makes this bridge look extremely similar to the curved t-beam type of bridge that was built on freeways in the United States. In particular, the bridge looks like curved t-beams built in Michigan because Michigan used a similar ornamental railing design on the bridges as well. Despite these visual similarities however, this Ontario example is not a t-beam.
King's Highway 401 is the very busy backbone of Ontario's surface transportation system, running from the province of Quebec to the city of Windsor, and running through Toronto in between. King's Highway 400 is another highway running from Toronto northward to Barrie and beyond. These two freeways are noted for being two of the older freeways in Ontario, although not as old as the Queen Elizabeth Way (QEW). Both KH-401 and KH-400 limited access highways are also noted for a rich and varied collection of bridges dating to the 1950s and 1960s. Many of these bridges are noted for their aesthetically pleasing design. The rigid frame which was so popular in Ontario was adapted for many of the overpasses. Another popular design for bridges of this period appears to have been the reinforced concrete slab, which in some cases was arched, providing an otherwise bland design type with an aesthetically pleasing appearance. Both the concrete slab and rigid-frame bridges were finished in the popular ornamental railing that was popular during the period.
HistoricBridges.org considers those bridges which retain original railings and are either rigid-frames or reinforced concrete slabs with aesthetic design to have at least some level of heritage significance, as long as they date to before 1970. Because many of these bridges have been replaced or irreversibly altered, with more alterations and replacements undoubtedly planned for the future, it is important to identify those bridges which meet this criteria. It is those bridges which should be prioritized for preservation. Even though these bridges may not be the most historically significant of Ontario bridges, it is important to consider the positive effect these visually pleasing overpasses have on a freeway which in many cases would be otherwise boring and ugly in many places if it were not for these bridges.
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This historic bridge has been demolished. This map is shown for reference purposes only.
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