Garden City SkywayEdit profile
The Garden City Skyway is a major high-level bridge located in St. Catharines and Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada, that allows the Queen Elizabeth Way (QEW) to cross the Welland Canal without the interruption of a lift bridge. Six lanes of traffic are carried across the bridge, which is 3.5 miles (5.6 km) in length and 123 feet (37.5 meters) at its tallest point. It is the tallest and largest single structure along the entire QEW; the Burlington Bay James N. Allan Skyway, which is also part of the QEW, is actually two separate and smaller four-lane bridges. Among all the bridges spanning the present Welland Canal, the Skyway is numbered Bridge 4A (the Homer Lift Bridge is Bridge 4). Construction began in January of 1960, with the main span crossing the Welland Canal hoisted into place in July of that same year. The bridge was open to traffic on October 18, 1963. During construction, the bridge was referred to as the Homer Skyway, taking its name from the lift bridge that the new skyway was to replace. Upon dedication, the bridge was officially named the Garden City Skyway, in honour of St. Catharines being Canada's Garden City. Tolls were charged on the bridge until 1973. Should the Garden City Skyway be closed due to a traffic accident or weather conditions, traffic is diverted along frontage roads to cross the canal at the Homer Lift Bridge, re-connecting to the QEW on the opposite side. Recent traffic planning initiatives have called for the demolition of the Garden City Skyway, replacing it with a twin-tube 8-lane tunnel. No firm plans for such construction have been formally announced and are unlikely, given that the Garden Skyway has been extensively rehabilitated by late 2002. The construction work included an Ontario " tall-wall" concrete median barrier, new bridge parapets, and the installation of shaded high-pressure sodium lights using the existing truss poles.