Crews begin installing first of three canal bridges

Jun 30, 2014

The first of three bridges that will cross over historically-aligned canals being re-created in downtown Buffalo is now being installed.

The whipple truss bridge now going up over Lake Street will look similar to the one that now crosses over the Commercial Slip at Canalside. The first piece was put in place Monday afternoon. Later this summer, two much larger bridges will also be installed at what is known as the Aud Block, where the former Memorial Auditorium once stood. 

The first piece of the Lake Street bridge was installed on Monday.
Credit ECHDC

Erie Canal Harbor Development Corporation President Thomas Dee says visitors to the site will now be able to better see what is envisioned for the canal project.

"It's the first piece on the Aud Block that's above grade. The public has not been able to see the work that has happened so far because it's all below grade, in the pit," Dee said Monday. "Now today, finally, we'll see something above grade, so it's pretty exciting."

The three bridges, which are being produced in nearby Danville, New York, will all be installed by mid-September. The entire canal project is on track to be completed in November. 

An artist rendering of what the finished canals and bridges will look like.
Credit File photo

"It's a complex project to build a bridge of this magnitude," Dee said. "Today is the smallest of the three. When you see the Lloyd Street bridge, that's massive. That's 50 feet wide. They're pretty impressive structures."

The re-created canals will serve as ice skating surfaces in the winter months.