Lewiston–Queenston Bridge

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Lewiston-Queenston Bridge
Lewiston-Queenston Bridge.jpg
The bridge as seen from the observation deck of the nearby Power Vista at the Robert Moses hydroelectric power plant (NY).
Carries 5 reversible lanes of Highway 405 and I-190
Crosses Niagara River
Locale Queenston, Ontario and Lewiston, New York
Maintained by Niagara Falls Bridge Commission
Design Arch Bridge
Total length 1,600 feet (488 m)
Longest span 1,000 feet (305 m)
Clearance below 370 feet (113 m)
Construction cost $16 million [1]
Opened November 1, 1962; 51 years ago (1962-11-01)
Toll $3.50 ($3.25 with ExpressPass) (westbound only)[2]

The Lewiston–Queenston Bridge, known in Canada as the "Queenston-Lewiston Bridge" is an arch bridge that crosses the Niagara River gorge just south of the Niagara Escarpment. The bridge was officially opened on November 1, 1962. It is an international bridge between the United States and Canada. It connects Interstate 190 in the town of Lewiston, New York to King's Highway 405 in the community of Queenston, Ontario. The Lewiston–Queenston Bridge is a replica of the Rainbow Bridge at Niagara Falls.

Customs plazas are located on both ends of the bridge, with tolls only being charged on entering Canada (USD$3.50 or CAD$3.75 per automobile as of May 1, 2014). Also, two duty-free stores are located between the two plazas.

The bridge permits no pedestrians, but licensed taxi service is permitted.[3] The Lewiston–Queenston Bridge lacks expedited border clearance facilities for NEXUS and FAST card holders traveling from Canada to the United States, but does have a NEXUS lane for travel into Canada.

Gantries have lights indicating the direction of traffic as the lanes are reversible. Speed limit is posted in kilometres and miles (15 mph limit) along the bridge. A set of flags, Canada and US, are found at the midpoint on the south side of the bridge.

Toll plaza[edit]

There are toll plazas for customers clearance on either side of the bridge. Toll plaza for payment for use of bridge is on the Canadian side only.

  • Canada bound:
    • 8 customs booths for cars/buses/RVs
    • 4 customs booths for trucks
    • parking area for trucks for inspections
    • helipad
    • 6 toll booths
  • US bound:
    • 6 customs booths for cars/buses/RVs
    • 3 customs booths for trucks
    • parking area for trucks for inspections

High mast lighting is used on the Canadian side with regular light standards used for bridge and US toll plaza.

Previous suspension bridges[edit]

The Queenston-Lewiston suspension bridge, 1915.

The current arch bridge replaced an old suspension bridge called the Queenston-Lewiston Bridge which was located seven-tenths of a mile north. Coincidentally, the suspension bridge was originally built near the location of the present-day Rainbow Bridge, and was moved to Queenston in 1898 by R.S. Buck and engineer L.L. Buck, after the completion of the Rainbow Bridge's predecessor, the Upper Steel Arch Bridge. The suspension bridge was dismantled in 1963.

There are a couple of reminders of the earlier bridge. First are two columns that lie within the Earl W. Brydges Artpark State Park. Second is the original brass plaque, now located midspan alongside the road, right at the border between the two countries. The plaque is flanked by a US and a Canadian flag.

The supports are part of Owen Morrell's Omega, a steel sculpture and observation platform added in 1981.[4] Two columns remain are found on the Canadian side at the foot of York Street in a wooded area now known as York Park.

The first Queenston-Lewiston Bridge was built in 1851 by engineer Edward Serrell and wrecked by wind in 1864 (or 1854[5]). Some of the cables were still in place as late as 1895.[6] The road deck span was about 841–849 ft (256–258 m). The suspension bridge design was unusual because the cables were attached to the cliff with only small towers. This made the road deck span shorter than the cable span of 1,040 feet (317 m).

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

References[edit]

Coordinates: 43°9′11″N 79°2′40.03″W / 43.15306°N 79.0444528°W / 43.15306; -79.0444528