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Long awaited steel for Johnson Street Bridge arriving soon

The first shipment reached North Vancouver on Sunday, and will arrive in Victoria on Tuesday.
An assembled steel structure for the Johnson Street bridge is loaded onto a barge in China on Monday at the ZTSS steel fabrication plant for shipment to Victoria. The first load, with other components, is due to arrive this week. Photo courtesy City of Victoria

After a long journey at sea, the first shipment of steel components for the Johnson Street Bridge has finally come in to harbour in B.C.

The steel arrived at the Lynnterm Terminal in North Vancouver on Sunday and is expected to be moved to Victoria’s Point Hope Shipyard on Tuesday afternoon.

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The shipment set sail from China more than a month ago and includes the north and south rings, the lower counterweight and temporary structure that will prop up components of the bridge while it is being built.

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The second shipment leaves China by the end of the month and is scheduled to arrive in Victoria by the end of September.

Jonathan Huggett, project manager for the bridge, said the construction is reaching a turning point.

“It’s exciting, isn’t it? We’ve been through a lot of difficulties over the last two or three years. It’s a major turning-of-the-corner,” he said.

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Once the second steel shipment arrives in September – that includes two steel trusses, the deck for cars and bikes and pedestrian and multi-use pathways – the rest of the work will be done in the city with Victoria-based companies. The next steps will be painting the rings and building a temporary support structure in the Bascule Pier to hold up the 50-foot, 350-tonne rings.

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“We have everything now. We have the motors, we have the span support structure, the rings … it’s now just a question of assembling everything,” he said. “By Christmas, to the untrained eye, that bridge is going to look almost complete.”

The project is on track to be completed by March 31, 2018 after multiple delays.

RELATED: Latest bridge delay may not be the last

Follow updates on the city’s website at

The first shipment of assembled steel components from China for the Johnson Street bridge project is unloaded off the AAL Kembla at Lynnterm Terminal in North Vancouver. It is due to arrive here this week. Photo courtesy City of Victoria