Scenic USA - New York

Peace Bridge

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Peace Bridge - Buffalo, New York

Photo by Gerri Jones
Gerri Jones Photography

     Designed to symbolize and also celebrate the enduring peace and prosperity between the United States and Canada, the Peace Bridge first received approval by the International Joint Commission in 1925. Construction quickly began that year, with three major contractors taking the lead. Chief engineer, Edward Lupfer, first tackled a way to cope with the swift flowing Niagara River. Here, between Buffalo, New York, and Fort Erie, Ontario, the Niagara produces a very powerful current, occasionally exceeding 12 miles per hour.
     Consisting of five arch spans and a through-truss span over Black Rock Canal on the New York's side, the bridge stretches out for over a mile. Taking two years to complete, the bridge incorporated 9000 tons of structural steel, and used a latex modified concrete deck. Originally designed to carry two lanes for heavy trucks and one for streetcar tracks, the bridge was modified to serve three lanes of traffic without the twin trolley tracks. The center lane is now reversible, accommodating peak traffic in either direction. The Peace Bridge is one of the busiest connections between America and Canada. The bridge carries an incredible amount of traffic, moving 40 billion dollars in trade and 4.7 million autos in a year.
     The impressive light display, seen in this remarkable evening view, is courtesy of a relatively new LED system. In 2009, the Peace Bridge underwent an extensive lighting project, utilizing state-of-the-art LED units. Controlled by computer software, lighting options are unlimited, where timing, color and themes can be changed by a push of a button. Light shows include special themes for both American and Canadian national holidays, as well as specific events and celebrations.

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