Walterdale Bridge, Edmonton

This is a tale of two bridges.  Well, one bridge, but old and new versions.

The bridge at the foot of Walterdale Hill is called, not surprisingly, Walterdale Bridge (although I have a deplorable tendency to refer to it as the Low-Level Bridge. There is a Low-Level Bridge in Edmonton, but in another location).

Anyway, this bridge – the Walterdale – is being replaced.  It’s a truss bridge, but its defining characteristic for me as a kid was its steel grating, which resonated oddly under the car tires, making a thrumming vibration as we drove over it.

The new bridge has arches and something called “thrust piers” which means pretty much nothing to me.  Anyway, enough techie stuff, mostly because I don’t know any more.  On my recent trip to Edmonton for  a family wedding, I was resolved to get a picture of the old and new bridges together.  As it turned out, I did better than that.

Taking pictures that I like of bridges that I like is an ongoing learning experience.  How can I get a shot that is interesting, attractive, and accurate?  Where should I stand?  How close can I stand?  I have a tendency to think that closer is better, and it’s not always true.

In this case, I started on the High-Level Bridge, looking straight on.  Then I moved closer, onto the bridge itself.  Then I had a shot from the hill overlooking the construction.  That’s not one I’d planned to take, and it’s the one I like the best.

Three-truss bridge with replacement two-arch bridge soaring above it.
Straight-on view from High-Level Bridge
Old Walterdale Bridge with arch of replacement bridge in background.
Moving closer: At the entry to the first truss.
Support trusses and arches for old and new Walterdale Bridgeslevel bridges.
Too close, too close! Pull back!
Old and new Walterdale Bridges, Edmonton, from hill to south.
Pulled way back: View from North Saskatchewan Drive, looking north over the river valley.

I’m happy with my little series of shots, but I do wonder if there will come a moment when both bridges are still there, but the construction cranes are not . . .

If you’re interested in this replacement project, the City of Edmonton has a great site dedicated to it.

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2 Comments

    1. Isabel Gibson

      Carla – The actual Low-level Bridge is, as you may have seen, similar in construction to the one I mis-name, but I dont think it has that funky steel grate.

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