Recent inspection prompts Calgary to abruptly close pedestrian bridge

Recent inspection prompts Calgary to abruptly close pedestrian bridge

CALGARY — Officials have abruptly closed a pedestrian bridge that connects an island park in Calgary with the city’s downtown after getting the results of a recent inspection.

A news release from the city says the Jaipur Bridge, which is one of four connections over the Bow River to Prince’s Island Park, has “accelerated deterioration” from water and salt.

Jaipur Bridge was built in 1968 and was only intended to last 50 years, so its closure was already planned for August 2020 and a replacement was scheduled to be built in 2021.

The city says a third-party engineering consultant will inspect the bridge next week to decide if there’s anything that can be done to extend its life until August.

The city says the bridge has been inspected annually since 2012 due to its progressive deterioration and two inspections were done in February in addition to one this month.

Prince’s Island Park hosts many large events throughout the year including the Canada Day celebration and Calgary Folk Festival.

“Based on the latest inspection, carried out this month, there are concerns regarding the structural integrity of the bridge,” a news release from the city said Saturday.

“Out of an abundance of caution, City structural engineers recommended the immediate closure of the bridge ahead of the third-party inspection next week.”

The bridge is named for Jaipur, India, which is one of Calgary’s sister cities.