The City of Edmonton announced that the new Smith Crossing Pedestrian Bridge is now open, on budget, ahead of schedule and in time for fall photographs.
The Smith Crossing Pedestrian Bridge, located along 23 Avenue, forms a key link in Edmonton’s river valley trail network as it provides a safe crossing over Whitemud Creek and access to the MacTaggart and Larch Sanctuaries.
“The Smith Crossing bridge is a beloved destination for many Edmontonians and provides an important link to the beautiful trails around Whitemud Creek,” said Sam El Mohtar, director, Transportation Infrastructure Delivery. “The new structure is a tied arch bridge with a slender, open design that helps it fit within the natural area. It will provide a safe connection to the surrounding trails for many decades to come.”
The $6.3 million project involved replacing the more than 100-year-old bridge with a new structure that meets current structural and safety standards. The new bridge is installed higher from the ground to improve the bridge’s resilience to floods while also allowing larger animals such as moose or deer to walk under the bridge.
The new bridge is in the same location as the old bridge which reduces its impact on nature and strengthens ties to the existing trail network. Protecting the environment while creating new ways for residents to connect with nature is part of The City Plan vision.
Built in 1914, the original Smith Crossing Bridge was named after the Smith family, who were pioneers in the area. It was a vehicle bridge until 1961 when it was changed to a pedestrian bridge. A piece of the old bridge has been used in a new interpretive plaque near the bridge.
Featured image: (City of Edmonton)