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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - February 27, 1909, Lethbridge, Alberta LETHBKIDGE HEBALD SPECIAL PUBLICITY NUMBER J I THE C R R. VIADUCT AT -ONE OF THE WONDERS OF THE WORLD LETHBRIDGE is going to be one of the greatest railway centres in the territory between Winnipeg and the Pacific coast. To establish a foundation for this contention one has only to point out that the Canadian Pacific Railway is spending a couple of million dol- lars in changing the route of the Crows Nest Pass branch between j Lethbridge and Macleod. This amount of money is being spent on ix stretch of country about 35 miles in extent. In order to understand the rea- sou for such a heavy expenditure oa such a small section of the road, it is necessary to mention tfcat when the Crows Nest was originally built it crossed the St. Mary's and the Belly Hirers on a! series of wooden trestle bridges. There are some fifteen of these bridges large and small and they hare been a source of trouble anc expense to the railroad from the day the line was opened. Heavj rains in the spring washed the day from the high banks onto the track and impeded traffic anc at the same time the high wa- ter in the rivers often put the bridges out of commission for one or two days. Then again this route passed through a long stretch of the Blood Indian Reserve which was unproductive to the railway com- pany. Traffic on the Crows road expanded so rapidly that the big railroad corporation found that it was necessary, in order to make the hauls easier and in- crease the speed of its trains, to abandon the original route and establish a line directly connect- ing Lethbridge and Macleod. This at once necessitated the cemstruction of a bridge across the Belly river Lethbridge. It was a mammoth .but the C. P. R. appreciated the fact that the Crows Nest line was to be one of its greatest money i makers and after due considera- tiom the directors of the road con- sidered it would be a good invest- ment to appropriate a million or more dollars for the erection of this structure. ---__ -The purpose of this article is to give the public some idea of wonderful bridge. Taking inte "consideration both height will be the largest bridge in the world. r; The height r of the bridge will be 307 ft above the water, the length is ft., or some 12; yards over 'a'imle, and the cost of the structure will amount to The bridge spans. the deep cutting which the waters j of the river have worn in the prairie by their age-long course. As will be seen from our illus- tration, the banks of the river are- dissimilar in that in one case there is a high cliff, while on the other side the bank slopes up ;very gradually to the usual prai- rie leveL It is this irregularity in the banks of the river that has.j forced the designer to build so! a bridge. The Lethbridge structure will beV as we have said, taking both height and length into consider- ation, the: largest in the world. Tin's superiority over other rail- wsy bridges it owes to its enor- mous height above the water. It not so long as the famous Eorth Bridge (which is ft.; in or as the Tay.Bridge j which has a span of. over'two mil-' es, but in each of these cases the headway is much less, that of the Jforth Bridge being 150 ft. for a I distance of ft. above high! water, and that of the Tay only! of ft. Other huge bridges which! approach thb Lethbridge giant in length, are the bridge over the Dn.eiper at Jekaterinoslaw, which is ft. in fcngth; the Alex- androwski bridge over the Volga ;Syiran the Se- verm bridge and the THE C. P. R. BRIDGE COMPARED IN HEIGHT WITH THE UNION BANK BUILDING AT WINNIPEG. Empress bridge over the River Sutlej, on the Indus Tallev Rail- way (4-5ths of a Of the bridges which approach the bridge at Lethbridge in height the Kentucky Railway bridge is important. having a height of 275 feet 6 inches above low water, while the C. P. R. ?s own bridge over the Fra- ser River is 125 "ft. high. The structure which spans the Victor- ia Falls of the Zambesi river has the advantage of the new C. P. R. bridge in height, but fails iu. comparison in length. Altogether there are 67 bents and 33 towers in the bridge. Fourteen of the towers are over 180 feet high. Up to the pres- ent time over 600 have been used in tion, and it is complete this to cars. cars of stee its construe likely that when will be increased All the steel is run out on a specially construct- ed traveller, which lets the steel girders down into place by means of a cable. This cable is 11 miles long, and is made chiefly of chain. The steel is then taken by another set of tackle and placed in per- manent position. The length of time taken to build one tower of course varies with weather, but if these are worked on steadily three can be built in a month, that is three of the largest towers. All the diagonal bracing may be termed wind bracing for that is what it is for.. The standpipe is at present, the highest point in the city fol- lowing the A. R. I. building. The bridge however, will be 307 ft. to the edge of the girders and another three and a half feet to the rail. The concrete foundation goes down to 24 feet below low water and goes down below all mud, standing on hard shale. The land towers are built on concrete piles, the three main towers in the centre of the bridge are also built on piles. Protec- tion work is to be put in consist- ing of a concrete retaining wall or crib.> In the construction of the bridge one of the oldest land marks of the city, had to be de- stroyed, the old Gait house, one of the first houses ever built in Lethbridge, to make room for one of the piers. The structure is really via- duct, and will be the only one of its sort in the world, such an en- gineering feat having never been undertaken before. At the present rate of progress should be finished bjr the end- The "total tou- nage of the bridge is estimated at tons. In its construc- tion cubic yards of con- crete have been used, also barrels of cement. The number of piles is or lineal feet of concrete piling have been used. No serious accident has, up to the present, happened, which is a great thing to say of a work of this sort. If there had been no allowance made for contraction at 40 de- grees below zero the bridge would short by three and a half feet, but a scystem of slid- ing plates allow and contraction. the base of the tall piles is 111 feet. The erecting cage has three platforms for the men to work on. These platforms are all con- nected by means of steel braces and are 25 from another. Inis cage is like scaffolding only it is hanging. This can be moved to any place by means of the traveller. There are about 9000 field riv- ets in one tower which are "ut into position by mean? oFa fr- etting traveller, having spec'ial machinery. If it was ever necesary to fill in the portion of the valley that the bridge now spans it would take more than the whole eartk 01 Lethbridge, i.e., eighteen miiiion cubic yords of earth. On the west side of the-river, the bridge will connect with the new cut-off to Maclead. This line will run through one of the richest winter wheat districts of all Alberta, and already one new town has sprung up along this tine, namely, Monarch. In beginning this article we stated that Lethbridge was des- tined to be one of the greatest railroad centres west of Winni- peg, and our reason for making this assertion was inspired by the fact that the C. P. R. would not be spendinng such an immense amount of money in the erection of this bridge and the divertion of the line to Macleod if it did not have in view the opening of new lines throughout Southern Alberta. Already this great rail- road has decided to place under YARDS AT LETHBRIDGE AT WORK ON THE CONSTRUCTION NEWBRIDGE. for expansion Instruction this year a branch The width of hn? Abridge to Calgary, and a line from Weyburn in Sas- katchewan to open- ing up.practically unknown ter- ritory of the main line. The grade of the Crow's line west of the city will also be reduced and a branch line built from Fort Steele. B. C. to Golden on the main line of the C. P. R. The reduction of the grade means that the C.P.R. intends to make this line the main freight carrier te the Pacific coast, and it is rea- sonable to expect that this route will be used almost exclusively ia carrying Alberta's grain to Van- couver to be shipped via the Paci- fic ocean to Liverpool. Then again the C. P. R. has bought a controlling interest in the Alber- ta Railway and Irrigation Co., a further demonstration of the faith it has in the southerm 'part of Alberta. Thus the amount to be spent on the improvement of its lines and the [building of new roads is proof positive that its intention is to jmake Lethbridge its leading cen- i tre of operation. It is only with- I in the last couple of rears that j the C. P. R. erected, a 15 stall j round house here, and it is rea- sonable to expect that as soon as the branch lines are constructed the plant here will be doubled or trebled. It. is also the of the C. P. R. to erect large car shops in Alberta within the next ffive years, and the people of Lethbridge believe that this city has excellent opportunities of se- curing this concern which will give employment to several thou- sands of men. The C. P. R. has been making i strong bid for the trade and one of its largest pas- senger roads is known as the Soo- Spokane, running from St. Minn., over the Soo line to Moose Jaw, along the main line to Cole- ridge, and over the Crows Nest Railroad to Spokane. This route will be extended to Portland aad Seattle within the next couple of years. In order to capture a large share of the through traffic to the coast it is understood that the road will be made even more direct by oper- ating this service over the new Weyburn branch to Lethbridge. Such a line would cut off consid- erable mileage, and enable the C.P.R. to beat out all the Am- erican roads as far as fast time between the Twin Cities and Se- attle, and Portland, Oregon, concerned. s A VIEW OF THE C. P. R At IT APPEAftEO THE END OF THIS QIVEC SOME IDEA Of THE HEIGHT AND LENGTH OF ,THI MIDGE f 7 ;