Project status – November 2023
The Peace Bridge is now fully open after partial closure for construction. New steel tension cables have replaced all former glass railings. The Peace Bridge remained partially open to maintain public access during the full construction period while fencing was installed to protect members of the public following the 2022 vandalism event. You may notice workers on-site past November to address deficiency items.
We thank all Calgarians and visitors for your patience while we repaired the railings on this significant landmark and very popular connection in our city.
About the project
The Peace Bridge originally opened to the public on March 24, 2012, and over the last 10 years has become an iconic landmark for both Calgarians and tourists, drawing approximately 9000 visitors per day in the summer months who walk and wheel over the bridge.
In July 2022, 70 of the 100 glass railing panels were vandalized and since that time, steady progress has been made to evaluate a repair solution that maintains the original design of the bridge, using materials less susceptible to vandalism and that are easier to maintain over time.
Working collaboratively with Santiago Calatrava Architects and Engineers and a local architectural firm, steel tension cables replace the glass railing panels in a solution that maintains the original design for the bridge while also reducing costs for ongoing maintenance. We thank Calgarians for their patience as we developed an efficient and cost-effective plan to repair the Peace Bridge.
By changing the materials of the Peace Bridge railing from glass to steel cables, we’re able to restore the Peace Bridge’s iconic look while also:
- Reducing annual maintenance costs by $35,000
- Keeping the bridge easy to maintain by using materials readily available
- Keeping the bridge safe and durable by using a material more resistant to vandalism
The total estimated investment for this project is $1.9 million.
This budget includes the railing replacement work of approximately $1 million and repairs of $900,000.
Frequently Asked Questions
Public safety continues to be our top priority, so several safety and security measures were installed following the vandalism event to protect the public. This involved removing the damaged panels and installing fencing on the sidewalks to protect pedestrians, as well as security guards to patrol the Peace Bridge. We have also been working closely with Mr. Calatrava and our architectural consultant over the last few months to develop and finalize a plan to repair the Peace Bridge.
As the Peace Bridge is a popular destination for both Calgarians and those visiting Calgary, our plan to repair the Peace Bridge needed to be safe, durable and align closely with the original design of the Peace Bridge. Given our current economic climate, the cost of both the repair and ongoing maintenance of the bridge was also a key consideration. After an evaluation of the different factors, we consulted with Mr. Calatrava to ensure our proposed plan to use steel tension cables stayed true to his original design for the Peace Bridge.
The vandalism event allowed us to take a closer look at alternate materials that would be more durable over time, easier and more cost effective to install and maintain, while also staying true to the original design for the Peace Bridge. Steel tension cables met the criteria with the materials available, allowing us to start repairing the Peace Bridge in Spring 2023.
In our consultation with Mr. Calatrava, maintaining the railing shape and transparency was a key outcome of the original design for the Peace Bridge. The use of steel tension cables allows the curved railing shape and transparency to be maintained for those walking and wheeling on the Peace Bridge while also being more cost effective to install and maintain.
Construction will be substantially completed by the end of November. We thank you for your continued patience as we reach substantial completion.
Walking and wheeling access will be maintained during construction; however, commuters are advised to use alternate routes when possible, and to exercise caution in using the bridge as the space to pass over the bridge will be narrow and the area may be busy. Construction signage will be in place and construction fencing will remain to protect members of the public during construction.
- Detailed design: Complete
- Railing repair start: Spring 2023
- Railing repair completion: End of November 2023
Construction activities are dependent on several factors. Timelines may change due to inclement weather, complexity, supply chain, and/or other unexpected circumstances.