Peace Bridge

From Academic Kids

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Peace Bridge logo

The Peace Bridge is an arch bridge that consists of five arched spans over the Niagara River and a Parker through-truss which spans the Black Rock Canal on the American side of the river. The total length of this bridge is 5,800 feet (1,770 m). The material used in the construction included three thousand five hundred feet of steel work, 9,000 tons of structural steel and 800 tons of reinforcing steel in the concrete abutments.

It was constructed as a highway bridge to address the needs of pedestrian and motor vehicle traffic which could not be accommodated by the International Railway Bridge that had been built in 1873.

The Peace Bridge is an international bridge between Canada and the United States located at the north end of Lake Erie at the head of the Niagara River about 20 km (13 mi.) above the Falls. It connects the City of Buffalo, New York and the Town of Fort Erie, Ontario It is operated under the auspices of the Buffalo and Fort Erie Public Bridge Authority.

Peace Bridge, Photo by Bertrand Voutaz / structurae
Peace Bridge, Photo by Bertrand Voutaz / structurae

The building of the Peace Bridge was approved by the International Joint Commission on August 6, 1925. A major obstacle to the building this bridge was the swift river current which averages 7.5 to 12 miles per hour. Construction, begun in 1925 was completed in the spring Spring of 1927. On June 1st bridge was opened to the public although the official ceremony was held on August 7, 1927. The Peace Bridge was named so to commemorate 100 years of peace between the United States and Canada. When the bridge opened Buffalo became the chief port of entry to Canada from the United States. At the time it was the only vehicular bridge on the Great Lakes from Niagara Falls to Minnesota. The bridge remains one of North America's important commercial ports. Four thousand trucks cross the Peace Bridge daily.

The Buffalo and Fort Erie Public Bridge Authority, in 1997, announced plans for the building of a twin second Peace Bridge to be situated to the north of and beside the existing Peace Bridge. It is expected that the new Peace Bridge will alleviate traffic congestion and increase daily vehicle traffic by at least 33 per cent. Legal challenges as well as concerns about the design and how costs will be paid have delayed the start of construction.

Other nearby bridges that allow passage between the United States and Canada include the Rainbow Bridge, the Queenston-Lewiston Bridge and the Whirlpool Rapids Bridge.

On the New York side, Interstate 190 has a direct northbound off-ramp (Exit 9) onto the Peace Bridge. On the Ontario side, the Queen Elizabeth Way begins after Canadian Customs.

See also: List of bridges

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