Canadian Consulting Engineer

Upgrades recommended for Granville Street Bridge

Questions over the ability of Vancouver's landmark Granville Street Bridge to carry heavy tour buses, led to the ci...

January 2, 2008   Canadian Consulting Engineer

Questions over the ability of Vancouver’s landmark Granville Street Bridge to carry heavy tour buses, led to the city asking consulting engineers Buckland and Taylor to do investigative studies.
The 50-year old bridge takes traffic from downtown Vancouver over False Creek to Granville Island, a popular destination for tourists with its market, arts studios and restaurants. The bridge has a 27-tonne weight limit, but the city was being asked to allow heavier dual axle tour buses to use the crossing. As a result, last summer, the city asked Buckland and Taylor to conduct a preliminary load limit review which included evaluating the bridge superstructure components in accordance with the provisions of the current Canadian Highways Bridge Design Code, Section 14.
In July, Buckland and Taylor reported back that the deck system on the steel truss spans was adequate for the heavier bus loadings, but that there were “substantial and widespread deficiencies for these loadings … on most of the concrete girder approach spans.”
The engineers therefore recommended that the crossing be upgraded. Darrel Gagnon, P.Eng. of Buckland and Taylor explains that while the final strengthening solution has not been selected yet, they strongly expect it will involve the installation of external stirrups to strengthen the girders.


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