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Albert Memorial Bridge

Albert Memorial Bridge

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

Bridge Documented: May 27, 2015

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Key Facts

Facility Carried / Feature Intersected
Albert Street Over Wascana Creek
Location
Saskatoon: Division 11, Saskatchewan: Canada
Structure Type
Concrete Slab, Fixed
Construction Date and Builder / Engineer
1930 By Builder/Contractor: Carter-Halls-Aldinger Company and Engineer/Design: Claude Allen Porter Turner of Minneapolis, Minnesotaand Puntin, O'Leary and Coxall

Technical Facts

Rehabilitation Date
Not Available or Not Applicable
Main Span Length
72 Feet (21.9 Meters)
Structure Length
843 Feet (256.9 Meters)
Roadway Width
Not Available
Spans
1 Main Span(s)
NBI Number
Not Applicable

Historic Significance Rating (HSR)
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Bridge Documentation

This unusual bridge has a small main span and a long approach and is noted for its association with famous engineer C. A. P. Turner. It was opened in 1930 and dedicated as a memorial to the Saskatchewan soldiers who died in World War I. The Albert Memorial Bridge is the third at the location. It's construction was part of a larger project during the Great Depression, which also included draining and dredging the adjacent Wascana Lake, and building two islands in the lake. The pastel-colored terracotta balusters were inspired by the interest shown in the discovery of King Tut's Tomb in 1923. The bridge was rededicated in 1988 following a restoration project. The Albert Memorial Bridge was recognized as a Municipal Heritage Property in 1984 (MHP 392) and was listed on the Canadian Register of Historic Places in 2006. Notes from provincial heritage bridge inventory: "Albert Memorial Bridge"; current Municipal Heritage Property; depression-era relief project; mushroom-head, flat-slab design by historically-significant Minneapolis consulting engineer, Claude A.P. Turner; similar to the “Moose Jaw Viaduct” of the same period, but more ornate.

Information and Findings From Canada's Historic Places

Description of Historic Place

The Albert Memorial Bridge is a Municipal Heritage Property located on Albert Street, a main north-south throughway in Regina. Constructed in 1930, the property features a 256-metre long bridge spanning the Wascana Creek.

Heritage Value

The heritage value of Albert Memorial Bridge lies in its association with the public relief programs started in response to the Great Depression. The economic depression that followed the stock market crash in 1929 had a tremendous impact on Saskatchewan. Funded jointly by the federal, provincial and municipal governments, the Albert Memorial Bridge was constructed in 1930 as part of a relief project that employed 700 men. On November 10, 1930 the ornate bridge was dedicated to the province’s fallen soldiers of World War I, making it the first war memorial commissioned by the provincial government. Situated on Regina's main north-south throughway, the Albert Memorial Bridge serves as a gateway to Wascana Park, the Old Lakeview area and the downtown core. It is reputed to be the longest bridge spanning the shortest body of water in the world.

The heritage value of the Albert Memorial Bridge also lies in its Art Deco-influenced architecture. Designed by the firm of Puntin, O'Leary and Coxall, the Albert Memorial Bridge provides an excellent example of decorative glazed terracotta in an Egyptian motif. The property features obelisk-like entry towers adorned with portraits of Queen Victoria, lamp posts adorn with images of bison heads, and colorful terracotta balusters decorated with lotus flowers and papyrus plants. Symmetrical in design, the Albert Memorial Bridge displays exotic motifs arranged in geometric patterns which relay a sense of drama, luxury, and elegance, all characteristics of the Art Deco architectural style.

Source:

The City of Regina Bylaw No. 7880 HR B84.

Character-Defining Elements

The heritage value of the Albert Memorial Bridge resides in the following character-defining elements:
-those elements that speak to its status as a landmark in the community, including its orientation on its original location;
-those elements that reflect its Art Deco-influenced architectural style, including the obelisk-like entry towers adorned with portraits of Queen Victoria, lamp posts adorned with images of bison heads, and terra cotta balusters decorated with lotus flowers and papyrus plants.

Heritage Designation and Type: Yes

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