Advertisement

Drivers, rejoice: Montreal’s new Samuel de Champlain Bridge completely open

Click to play video: 'New Champlain Bridge opens on Canada Day' New Champlain Bridge opens on Canada Day
WATCH: The new and long-awaited Champlain Bridge is officially open in both directions – Jul 1, 2019

The new Samuel de Champlain Bridge, one of Canada’s largest infrastructure projects, is officially open in both directions.

Drivers are able to access both spans of the new structure, which links Montreal to the south shore, as of late Monday morning.

READ MORE: New Samuel de Champlain Bridge officially inaugurated

While the bridge’s northbound lanes were open to traffic last Friday, the southbound lanes were officially opened on Canada Day.

WATCH: After four years of construction, Montreal’s new Champlain Bridge is now officially open to commuters in both directions

Click to play video: 'The mammoth task of demolishing Montreal’s old Champlain Bridge' The mammoth task of demolishing Montreal’s old Champlain Bridge
The mammoth task of demolishing Montreal’s old Champlain Bridge – Jul 1, 2019

The new structure, which spans 3.4 kilometres, has three lanes in each direction for cars. It also has a central deck for public transit, specifically for the future Réseau express métropolitain (REM) light-rail system.

Story continues below advertisement

“I’m very proud of all the team and all the people who worked on this bridge,” said Sandra Martel, the chief engineer of the new bridge.

The official opening also marks the final chapter for the old Champlain Bridge, which was inaugurated about 57 years ago. It will be dismantled over a three-year period starting in 2020.

Eugene Diabo worked on the piers and steel structure during the construction of the original bridge from 1959 until 1961. While he’s proud of what he accomplished, the old structure’s closure was also bittersweet.

“It’s a little sad to see it go,” he said.

READ MORE: Montreal’s new Samuel de Champlain Bridge opens northbound

The $4.2-billion bridge opens four years after construction began. It was originally scheduled to open to traffic last December, but delays pushed back the schedule and added more than $235 million to the price tag.

The pedestrian and bike path along the bridge will open later this summer.

WATCH: Cyclists on the fence about bike path on new Champlain Bridge

Click to play video: 'Cyclists on the fence about bike path on new Champlain Bridge' Cyclists on the fence about bike path on new Champlain Bridge
Cyclists on the fence about bike path on new Champlain Bridge – Jun 28, 2019

— With files from Global News’ Rachel Lau, Tim Sargeant and the Canadian Press

Advertisement

Sponsored content