Knight Street Bridge

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Knight Street Bridge
Knight Street Bridge.jpg
Carries 4-6 lanes of Knight Street, pedestrians and bicycles
Crosses North Arm Fraser River
Locale Richmond
Vancouver
Maintained by TransLink
Design girder bridge
Total length 1436 m
Construction begin 1969
Opened 1974
Preceded by Fraser Street Bridge
Coordinates 49°12′15″N 123°04′39″W / 49.204084°N 123.077517°W / 49.204084; -123.077517Coordinates: 49°12′15″N 123°04′39″W / 49.204084°N 123.077517°W / 49.204084; -123.077517

The Knight Street Bridge is a cantilever bridge which spans the North Arm of the Fraser River in British Columbia, connecting Vancouver and Richmond, and serving as a feeder route for Highways 91 and 99 to its south. It is located to the east of the Oak Street Bridge. Besides spanning the river, the bridge also provides access to Mitchell Island. The bridge has a length of 1436 metres[1] and has clearances of 12.2 by 79.2 metres over the north channel, and 20.1 by 109.7 metres for the south channel. The northern section carries six lanes of traffic, while the southern section carries four.

The bridge has the distinction of having the most bridge motor vehicle accidents in BC. In addition, the bridge's interchange with Marine Drive is in the top three intersections for motor vehicle accidents in BC.[2]

TransLink, the regional transportation authority, is responsible for the bridge.[3]

History[edit]

The bridge was built to replace an obsolete span linking the south end of Fraser Street with No. 5 Road in Richmond via Mitchell Island. The Fraser Street Bridge was a through truss built in 1905 with a swing span on the northern side of Mitchell Island. The channel was difficult to navigate, making collisions with ships and barges routine. The height of the Knight Street bridge alleviated this problem.

The construction of the Knight Street Bridge took 5 years, costing about $15 million including the approaches. Electric heating cables were installed in the deck to minimize the use of de-icing salt in the winter.[4] The bridge also carries a water pipe and a gas pipe, with the former being the only water supply to Mitchell Island at the time.[5] The bridge opened on January 15, 1974, and the Fraser Street Bridge was dismantled the next month.[4]

On January 15, 2000 the boom of a mobile crane transported on a barge named T.L. Sharpe, towed by the Sea Cap XII, struck the underside of the Knight Street Bridge at 1:45 PM, damaging the bridge and the fixtures secured underneath its deck. The impact caused the boom to bend and the crane to slide off the barge and sink, and the bridge was closed to traffic for about 48 hours.[6] Water supply to Mitchell Island via the bridge was shut down for 25 days, and an emergency bypass water supply from Vancouver was installed.[5] The incident prompted the City of Richmond to install a second water main to Mitchell Island in 2002.[7]

See also[edit]

References[edit]