Chaudière Crossing: Union Bridge rehabilitation and Hull Causeway widening

From: Public Services and Procurement Canada

Budget 2019 provided funding for the rehabilitation and ongoing maintenance of the Chaudière Crossing.

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Overview of projects

Gatineau, Québec and Ottawa, Ontario
Locate the Chaudière Crossing on a map
Type of project
Lead department
Public Services and Procurement Canada
Construction firms
Construction Demathieu & Bard (CDB) Inc.
$24.6 million
Project status
Implementation phase
Next steps
Union Bridge Rehabilitation and Hull Causeway Widening

Description of projects

Over the next year, planned projects to the Chaudière Crossing include the widening of the Hull Causeway and a major rehabilitation of the 100-year-old Union Bridge.

Hull Causeway widening

The Hull Causeway widening will provide dedicated cyclist lanes and a wider sidewalk across the entire Chaudière Crossing as part of a complete street concept that will be in harmony with the Zibi development project and the remainder of the crossing. The cyclist lanes will be raised, and a new lighting system will be installed, which will improve cyclist safety.

Union Bridge rehabilitation

The Union Bridge is a single-span steel truss with an exposed concrete deck and has been in service for over 100 years. While the bridge has undergone rehabilitation a number of times, several steel and concrete components are at the end of their useful lives and therefore require repair or replacement.

Key milestones

For the Union Bridge rehabilitation and the Hull Causeway widening, the work will take place from July 2021 to September 2022.

Impact on traffic

Traffic will be limited during the construction period to public transit, northbound traffic to Gatineau and active transportation.

  • Pedestrians will still have access through the construction zone.
  • Cyclists will have to dismount and walk through the construction zone.
  • Traffic from Gatineau to Ottawa:
    • Only OC Transpo buses will go southbound through the construction zone, and traffic signal control will be used to alternate the direction of traffic flow.
    • Local traffic to the Portage Power facility will be allowed.
    • All other southbound vehicles will need to use an alternative bridge to cross to Ottawa.
  • Traffic from Ottawa to Gatineau:
    • Northbound travel will be maintained at all times within the Chaudière Crossing.
    • However, trucks in excess of 33 tonnes will be detoured to the Macdonald-Cartier Bridge during the construction period.

Under normal circumstances, approximately 18,000 vehicles cross the Chaudière Crossing per day. This amounts to 9% of the vehicular traffic on the interprovincial bridges in the National Capital Region. The bridge is also used by about 10% of all pedestrians and cyclists crossing the river daily.

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, a reduction of approximately 35% in traffic has been observed across all interprovincial bridges compared to 2019.

Photo gallery

Panorama view of the Union Bridge with the Parliament buildings in the background

Background of project

Chaudière Crossing stucture

The Chaudière Crossing passes over the Ottawa River and several hydroelectric waterways. It unites the communities of Gatineau, Quebec, and Ottawa, Ontario. This crossing links Eddy Street, in Hull, to Booth Street in Ottawa.

The Chaudière Crossing is a complex structure consisting of 8 parts:

  1. Bronson channel span (also known as the Rafting Channel Bridge)
  2. Ottawa hydroelectric power commission channel span (also known as the power channel or the Lost Channel Bridge)
  3. Buchanan channel span
  4. Union Bridge (also known as Chaudière Bridge)
  5. Arch number 1
  6. Arch number 3
  7. Hull trestle
  8. Hull Causeway Bridge

All the water in the Ottawa River flows under the 8 structures and through a variety of waterways intended to harness the hydroelectric power of the river.

Aerial view of the Chaudière Crossing.

History of the bridge

  • The Chaudière Crossing is the oldest crossing in the National Capital Region and was first opened to the public in the 1820s.
  • The oldest structure on the crossing is the Union Bridge, which was replaced in 1919.
  • The crossing had 4 of its structures replaced in the 1970s, 2 in 2008 and 1 in 2011.

Latest news about this project

Government of Canada continues to improve crossings in National Capital Region

Related links

More information

Contact Real Property Services

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