Envisioning new sustainability levels

25 November 2019

When authorities started planning to build its replacement, in 2013, they now aimed at a service life of 125 years, or more than twice as long as its predecessor. The new Champlain Bridge, which opened in 2019, is designed to achieve that.


Canada’s busiest bridge, the Champlain Bridge, was conceived in 1955 and opened in 1962. The rugged truss design – with the bridge deck enclosed in a triangular arrangement of steel girders – is strong, simple and characteristic of its era. However with fifty million cars, buses and trucks crossing the bridge each year, the bridge’s popularity has led to considerable wear and tear.

lafargeholcim canada champlain bridge traffic


The bridge deck is suspended from cables which are attached to the towers, following the bridge’s elegant twin cable-stayed design. In addition, it offers different sustainable transit options, such as a multi-use corridor for pedestrians and cyclists and a two-lane rail corridor for the electric train, which will come into operation in the next two years. Its more modern design helped assure quicker construction and a more economical use of materials. The design also promises lower maintenance as well as an expected service life that’s more than twice as long as its predecessor. The Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure has designated the New Champlain Bridge as ENVISION-certified, the prominent North American standard.