Canso Canal

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Canso Canal lock and lighthouse
Canso Canal is located in Nova Scotia
Canso Canal
Canso Canal in Nova Scotia

The Canso Canal is a short canal located in Nova Scotia, Canada.

Canal location[edit]

The Canso Canal is located in the Strait of Canso, on the eastern side of the Canso Causeway, a rock-fill causeway which opened in 1955 to carry a 2-lane highway and a single rail track from Cape Breton Island to mainland Nova Scotia. The canal was built through Balhache Point in Inverness County.

The causeway completely blocks the Strait of Canso, which links the waters of St. George's Bay in the Northumberland Strait, a sub-basin of the Gulf of St. Lawrence, with Chedabucto Bay on the Atlantic Ocean.

Canal dimensions[edit]

The canal, constructed between 1953 and 1955, is 24 metres (78.7 ft) wide, 570 metres (1,870 ft) long and minimum depth of 9.8 metres (32.15 ft) with a single Seawaymax lock to account for tidal differences; any vessel capable of transiting the St. Lawrence Seaway will fit through the Canso Canal.

The Canso Canal Bridge is a 94-metre (308.3 ft) long swing bridge which carries the Trans-Canada Highway and a railway line across the canal immediately south of the southern end of the lock.

Canal operation[edit]

Vessels entering St. George's Bay to the west of the canal, or Chedabucto Bay to the east, must comply with a Vessel Traffic System operated by the Canadian Coast Guard.

An average of 2,069 ships, with an average gross tonnage of 1.88 million tons pass through the Canso Canal each year. About 85 per cent of vessel traffic is owned or operated by shipping companies, fishermen and government, the remainder being pleasure craft users.[1]

Further reading[edit]


  1. ^ King, Nancy (2009-08-23). "Canso Canal closing early this year for renovations". The Cape Breton Post. Transcontinental Media Inc. Retrieved 2009-08-24. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 45°38′53″N 61°24′50″W / 45.64806°N 61.41389°W / 45.64806; -61.41389 (Canso Canal)