Home Rehabilitation of Historic Blackfriars Bridge
The graceful arch truss represents the peak of wrought-iron construction, before the emergence of steel, and has become the oldest and longest-spanning arch-truss bridge of its type in North America.
Recognized as a Canadian Historic Place, and National Historic Civil Engineering Site, after 140 years, the question arose whether the bridge could survive and continue as a gateway into the downtown core, given the needs of modern-day vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians.
Using old-school and modern-day techniques to achieve an innovative and sustainable solution to preserve this historic bridge for future generations, a key priority was to preserve the original 1875 members, while upgrading where needed.
Wrought-iron contains impurities limited welding options. So to maintain historic integrity,
thousands hot rivets were used, a seldom-used technique in the past 75 years. Modern
button-headed bolts were supplemented to achieve a balance between heritage and structural requirements.
Replicas were created to match the original 1875 forged members, and lacing, with painstaking member-by-member adjustments to address dimensional variations in the originals.
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Dillon Consulting Limited
City of London