KAWARTHA LAKES-Parks Canada says a major milestone has been reached in the reconstruction of the Bobcaygeon Swing Bridge but there’s still no concrete date set for its reopening.
On March 10th Parks Canada announced the successful balancing of the bridge, allowing it to be lowered onto its pintle (centre support). Officials say after additional tests and checks, the bridge will be able to swing manually in the next few weeks and allow the remaining steps of the project to proceed. Since October 2022 the pintle has been installed and the vehicular bridge deck completed.
The remaining tasks include the forming and pouring of concrete on the bridge abutments, installation of the remaining mechanical components, hydraulic and electrical components, and paving.
It’s unclear if the bridge will open this spring. Officials say there’s no date set for the reopening.
“Parks Canada continues to work with the contractor, stressing the importance of completing the project. Until the bridge reopens, the enhanced pedestrian access over the upper gates of Lock 32 and its access paths will remain in place. Parks Canada appreciates the community’s patience while it undertakes these investments into the infrastructure in Bobcaygeon.”
Parks Canada advised local residents that the Bobcaygeon Swing Bridge would be closed to vehicular traffic on Wednesday, May 8, 2019 from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. for mechanical and structural inspection. In July 2019 officials announced the Swing Bridge would be closed for up to 6 months for “significant reconstruction”. It has been closed ever since.
In August 2022 Parks Canada announced the bridge was on track to open in the fall with hydraulic equipment being manufactured for the bridge expected to arrive on site in September.
Officials later said mechanical components and hydraulic equipment manufactured for the bridge that were expected to arrive on site this fall have been delayed, moving back the completion date once again.
“As a councillor and a business owner, I understand the importance of this bridge to small businesses in Bobcaygeon. We cannot continue to have the village essentially split in half by this project. Businesses on both sides are suffering. These delays are unacceptable.” Seymour-Fagan stated.
The Bobcaygeon Swing Bridge was originally constructed in 1921.