Hundreds of bolts connect one of the 290-tonne steel rings to the bascule pier. (Photo courtesy of Jonathan Huggett)

Span to be installed this month for Victoria’s Johnson Street Bridge

Existing bridge, marine channel closures expected

The Johnson Street bridge is getting closer to its March completion date as the bridge span is installed this month, leaving just minor tasks to finish the project for good.

The span – the bridge deck where vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists will cross – is tentatively scheduled to be lifted Saturday Jan. 27, potentially closing the existing bridge to traffic for the day. The marine channel will be closed for nine days while workers bolt the span to the rings and perform test bridge lifts. The Dynamic Beast, a giant crane barge able to lift over 800 metric tonnes, will arrive a day earlier.

“If it doesn’t lift at the end of the nine-day period, we’re in trouble,” said engineer and project manager for the bridge Jonathan Huggett, adding that this work will ensure the bridge deck lift mechanism is fully operational.

“This is do or die.”

Construction crews will work overnight if needed to get the project done, he said, but installation could still be delayed pending availability of the crane and unfavourable weather conditions.

RELATED: Johnson Street Bridge’s steel rings, lower counterweight lifted into place over weekend

RELATED: Orca-inspired sculpture pitched for Victoria Johnson Street Bridge park

In August, Huggett indicated the bridge would “look almost complete” by Christmas for the $105-million bridge replacement, however the span installation was pushed back to this month. Workers have been using that time to perform work on the span prior to the lift, Huggett said, rather than after it had been attached. Installing the span will be a major step to completing the project, but after those nine days, there is still work to be done.

“Obviously after that there’s still a lot of odds and ends left to do, but we will have demonstrated after the nine-day period that we can lift the bridge,” Huggett said. “It’s a huge step on that day.”

After the span is installed, workers will place concrete beams to close the gap between the two sides of the bridge, touch up the paint, and perform tests to ensure all parts are operating properly.

Huggett expects crowds to gather and watch as the giant steel structure is lifted into place, as was the case when the two 290-tonne steel rings were installed in early December, and when the steel parts originally arrived from China in early fall.

“It will be spectacular,” he said.

The bridge is on schedule for completion in March after years of delays.

MORE STORIES on the Johnson Street Bridge replacement 

lauren.boothby@vicnews.com

 

The south ring of the Johnson Street Bridge sits on the equalizer, a cradle that holds up the bridge, with wheels that rotate as the rings of the bridge move that will lift the bridge span. (Photo courtesy of Jonathan Huggett)

Aluminum planks are installed for the multi-use walkway on the bridge span at the end of December, the surface cyclists and pedestrians will use to travel across the new Johnson Street Bridge. (Photo courtesy Jonathan Huggett)

Just Posted

Goldie goes for gold in roller derby world cup

Duncan roller derby star making impact on world stage

Parksville resident builds bike to glide along railroad

ICF says rail use not permitted on active railroad

Games opening ceremonies promise to be magical

The Cowichan 2018 BC Summer Games will kick-off on Thursday, July 19… Continue reading

‘Love Bite’ brings vital message for dog owners

Thetis Island woman recounts life-changing ordeal

France doubles up Croatia 4-2 to win World Cup

Played in Moscow Russia, latest Fifa World Cup marks the highest scoring final since 1966

REPLAY: B.C.’s best video this week

In case you missed it, here’s a look at replay-worthy highlights from across the province this week

VIDEO: Firefighters put out brush fire in Nanaimo

Fire broke out in the area of a new development under construction in East Wellington

Former NHL goalie Ray Emery drowns in Lake Ontario

Police say the 35-year-old’s death appears to be a ‘case of misadventure’

Air quality statement warns of smoky air for Kamloops area

Environment ministry says area on north side of Thompson River may be affected by wildfire smoke

Pussy Riot claims on-field protest at World Cup final

Russian protest group claimed responsibility after four people ran onto field in police uniforms

Fans party on Montreal streets after French World Cup win

To city is home to nearly 57,000 French nationals

Motorcyclist dies as fire, crash happen at the same time on Nanaimo Parkway

Young male motorcycle rider collides with one vehicle, then struck by another

Victoria Police issue a public warning after a man was injured by a hidden syringe

Used syringes in discrete locations have caused injuries over the past year in Greater Victoria

Hiker rescued by helicopter after receiving burns in ‘cooking incident’

Campbell River Search and Rescue has been busy of late…

Most Read