Century old bridge set to close in 2020

WINNIPEG — It’s been part of the Winnipeg skyline for over 100 years, but come 2020, the Arlington Street bridge will be no longer.

The structure, built in 1912, joins the north and west of Winnipeg, crossing over the second widest section of the CP Rail yard.

After decades of use, the bridge no longer is a viable option for commuters, said Scott Suderman of the city of Winnipeg.

“The bridge is obsolete so we need to have a proactive plan in advance of the decommissioning of the bridge,” Suderman said Thursday night.

The iconic bridge is no longer meeting current city codes. A weight limit has been in place on it since the 1960s.

In 2013, the commuter route was closed to allow $350,ooo of repairs to be done.

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“It’s been deteriorating over the years. Something should be done,” Ron Keller said Thursday during an open house held by the city.

A bus tour around the area that will be affected and a workshop for Winnipeggers to discuss what will happen once the bridge is gone was held Thursday night.

All options are on the table, the city said.

“We haven’t really gotten into any details. We really want to work with the community first,” Suderman said.

A few options being considered are repurposing Arlington’s current posts and building up, creating a new bridge or widening the McPhillips underpass.

“How is that going to impact people? There won’t be a place to travel over the top of the railway and will it be a detriment,” resident Robert Steer said.

Thursday night’s public meeting was the first of many on the future of the bridge. A city-funded study should take about one year to complete, followed by recommendations on how the city will proceed.