Marigold Infrastructure Partners safely and successfully demolished the Stony Plain Road Bridge over Groat Road between December 29, 2022, and January 3, 2023. It was necessary to remove the existing bridge in order to build a new bridge that can support LRT infrastructure, trains, vehicles, pedestrians, and cyclists. With extensive collaboration between various crews, the bridge components were dismantled and transported to clear the area.

Here’s a look at how it all went down.

Timelapse Video of the Bridge Demolition

Bridge Demolition: Timeline of Events

Stony Plain Road Bridge Demolition Timeline

December 29, 2022 – Day 1

At 7 p.m., Marigold crews closed Groat Road between 107 Avenue and River Valley Road and Stony Plain Road between 129 Street and 131 Street. These closures were necessary for the safety of the public and to provide workers with a safe space to assemble the heavy equipment needed for demolition.

All around the site, crews performed important tasks which set the demolition up for success. Crane rig mats were set up on Groat Road to protect the surface once the excavator and other heavy equipment were delivered to site. Along the slopes, protective measures were put in place to guard the retaining wall and the barrier wall around the bridge. Finally, all around the work site, crews installed fencing which created a clear separation between the construction site and nearby public spaces. At Marigold, we are committed to keeping the public and all workers safe on and around our sites.

Once all the necessary preparations were in place, the metal crash barriers on either side of the bridge were dismantled and removed from site to be recycled.

Traffic signage in place after bridge access closed prior to demolition

December 30, 2022 – Day 2

Day two began with Marigold crews removing the handrail components from the bridge leaving just the flat bridge deck and the piers to be demolished. The removed handrails were then removed from site and recycled.

A unique challenge in this demolition was determining how to break apart the deck into small pieces. The surface concrete and asphalt were removed starting from the middle of the bridge and working outwards, dropping the debris down below. The rationale for this approach is due to the concrete diaphragm bracing that will be demolished as the decking is removed. By starting the demolition of the bridge deck in the middle, it will be possible to remove the bracing with the excavators safely off the compromised span. By 8 p.m. one-third of the bridge deck had been demolished.

Excavators in use to dismantle the bridge deck.

December 31, 2022 – Day 3

Crews worked day and night to break apart the bridge deck, continuing from the middle towards each end. As the pieces were broken off, they dropped down onto the rig mats that had been placed on Groat Road. Smaller pieces of equipment were used to push the rubble into piles that were then loaded into transport trucks and transported off-site.

Concrete and asphalt rubble from the bridge deck being collected

January 1, 2022 – Day 4

The last of the bridge deck was demolished and the focus shifted to clearing the rubble from site and dismantling the girders. Rather than bringing in additional material, Marigold crews reused about 30% of the rubble to create ramps over the concrete barrier that separates the northbound and southbound lanes of Groat Road. These ramps were used by the excavator operators to move their equipment between all four lanes when shearing the steel girders which held up the bridge deck.

Outside of the fence line, Marigold’s traffic safety team placed concrete jersey barriers across Stony Plain Road as an additional public safety precaution.

Jersey barriers placed on the east and west end of the bridge

January 2, 2022 – Day 5

Once all the steel girders were dismantled, crews began removing the bridge piers from the embankment. All of the metal components of the bridge, including the steel girders, the handrails, and crash barriers, were gathered together and loaded onto transport trucks before being sent off-site for recycling.

Now it was time for the crews to focus on the clean up efforts so that Groat Road could re-open as scheduled the following morning. Using small equipment, the remaining concrete rubble was gathered up and transported off-site. The rig mats, which protected Groat Road from damage during the demolition were removed from the roadway.

Rubble clean up on Groat Road and rig mats removal

January 3, 2022 – Day 6

In the wee hours of the morning, crews conducted a final sweep of Groat Road ensuring that all debris was removed, and roads were safe and ready for traffic. Crews then removed the traffic barriers and reopened the road by 5:30 a.m.

The completed bridge demolition marks a major milestone achieved by Marigold for the Valley Line West LRT project!

Aerial view of Groat Road after the Stony Plain Road bridge demolition

Next Steps: What to Expect

Stony Plain Road from 129 Street to 131 Street will remain closed until Fall 2024 when the new bridge will be ready for drivers and pedestrians. In the meantime, drivers, pedestrians, and cyclists travelling eastbound and westbound should use 102 Avenue or 107 Avenue as a detour.

The New Stony Plain Road Bridge

In the meantime, crews will continue preparing the area for the installation of the new bridge. Off-site, components of the new bridge are being fabricated. These components will be transported to site to be installed. In order to accommodate the installation of the new bridge in Spring 2023, Marigold will temporarily close Groat Road from 107 Avenue to River Valley Road. Sign up for our email newsletter to be notified in advance of the spring Groat Road closure and to stay up to date on the latest construction activities.