If you’ve been by Victoria’s Upper Harbour at night, you may have noticed a festive blue glow emanating from the new Johnson Street bridge.
The City of Victoria tweeted a couple of photos showing them testing bright blue lights on it to commemorate the original bridge’s apt nickname: “Blue Bridge”.
This tag originated in 1979, after the Johnson Street bridge at the time was painted blue, following a series of repairs.
Current estimates claim that people will be able to walk, bike, or drive across the bridge by March 31st, 2018.
Blue Bridge 2.0 was sighted in the Upper Harbour being tested and fitted for the lighting that will illuminate the new bridge at night. More tests will continue this evening and leading up to the installation of the bridge deck span in late January. pic.twitter.com/0aMJapjHkk
— City of Victoria (@CityOfVictoria) December 20, 2017
A source of controversy
The light installation is part of the many steps taken towards replacing the original structure.
The new Johnson Street bridge project began in November 2010, when 61% of people voted to replace the old structure. As it progressed, the path to its construction grew more and more difficult.
Original estimates predicted that the bridge would be completed by 2015. However, the first set of steel designed offshore by the Zhonghai Steel Structure, was found to be below standards, which delayed the project by 2 years.
Setbacks like these have resulted in the bridge’s budget ballooning from $63 million to $105 million.
The city is still certain that the “Blue Bridge 2.0” will be worth the wait – despite expenses, the new structure boasts reduced maintenance costs. The bridge will also be more inclusive, with 50% of the deck space being reserved for bikes and pedestrians.