Bad news for users of the Île-aux-Tourtes Bridge: the discovery of a new crack that closes the corridor leading to Montreal for an indefinite period.
The Ministry of Transport announced on Friday evening that the two-lane configuration in each direction, which was already implemented over the weekend, will be maintained on Monday in order to conduct analyses.
“This will determine whether further interventions are needed. At present, the possibility of further traffic lane closures cannot be ruled out.
The crack was noticed on the Montreal-bound side as part of regular monitoring at a time when the ministry said it was “particularly alert” due to the first frosts.
Interventions to strengthen this bridge, described as “at the end of its life” and linking Sainville and Vaudreuil-Dorion, were already underway, and concrete works are scheduled to be carried out this weekend.
The ministry clarifies that the building is still “safe” and that it will not hesitate to close it if this is no longer the case.
The Île-aux-Tourtes Bridge is undergoing a maintenance program including work and inspections until its replacement is officially opened.
But the “gradual” operation of this new bridge, which should be built north of the existing infrastructure, will only begin in 2026 and be completed in 2029, Transport Minister Genevieve said. A press release issued last February1.
The news of the closure of one of the lanes on the Île-aux-Tourtes bridge for an indefinite period comes as a harsh blow to its users, who have already suffered from this scenario in the past.
In fact, as of the fall of 2022, a year after the emergency shutdown of the infrastructure due to damaged reinforcing bars, the Department of Transportation said it had observed “some cracks developing” on a box girder on the north side of the bridge, towards Vaudreuil-Dorion.
Then a major project was launched that led to the closure of two lanes, one of which was for the safety of workers and flag raisers. This last route was finally reopened last September2.
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