Waterdale Bridge Replacement and Approach Roads Evaluation

Client City of Edmonton

Location Edmonton, Alberta

Concept Completion 2017

Construction Completion 2017

The concept planning study for the Walterdale Bridge was completed by a collaboration of four Edmonton based consulting firms led by ISL Engineering and Land Services. The team included prominent bridge and structural design firms Dialog and Buckland & Taylor, as well as Al-Terra Engineering, who provided overall project management and approach roads planning and design.

The purpose of the study was to define the location and alignment of a new bridge crossing the North Saskatchewan River to replace the 100 year old deteriorating Walterdale bridge. The primary objective was to evaluate options and develop a functional design for a signature bridge that would provide an iconic gateway to downtown Edmonton. A secondary objective was to develop and evaluate road alignment options for both Queen Elizabeth Park Road and Walterdale Hill Road in the vicinity of the bridge, as well as address urban design issues related to the park setting and major trail system.

Through an extensive evaluation process, the team developed a road and bridge alignment option that would allow the existing bridge to remain in service while the new bridge was under construction. This required very detailed alignment development and analysis, particularly on the north side of the river, to avoid a Heritage Cemetery and Burial Grounds, while siting the new bridge very near the existing bridge. The project required extensive public involvement, historical resources work and consultation, and environmental screening, which were all initiated during concept planning to facilitate fast tracking the design.

The same consulting team was retained by the City of Edmonton to provide detailed design and construction engineering services.

 Project Highlights

  • A very complex project delivered under tight timelines by multi-disciplined / multi-firm team required diligent and superior project management.
  • Resolution of many complex technical challenges required due to the large number of constraints (Epcor Power site, Heritage Cemetery and Burial Grounds, access to Kinsman site, and very restricted site).
  • Recommended concept plan achieved and exceeded City of Edmonton objectives and expectations, particularly with respect to maintaining traffic on the existing bridge during construction of the new bridge.
  • Constructability and staging (implementation strategy) thoroughly developed during concept planning to mitigate design and construction challenges.
  • Developed strategy in consultation with utility companies to relocate power and telecoms to new bridge in a cost-effective manner, with minimal disruption to traffic and/or utilities. Two 400mm diameter water mains and one 300mm high pressure pipeline will be permanently removed from the bridge in conjunction with the project.
  • Arch style signature bridge that fits sight and respects history of the site.
  • Roadway geometry minimized footprint on the river valley.