New Jaipur Bridge opens, linking Prince's Island Park and Eau Claire
New crossing higher and wider than previous bridge
An important pedestrian link between Eau Claire and Prince's Island Park has been restored with the opening on Monday of the new Jaipur Bridge.
The original bridge was closed two years ago after the city determined it was at the end of its lifespan — just over 50 years after it was built.
The bridge spans the lagoon at Prince's Island Park, connecting it with the Eau Claire district in downtown Calgary.
Project manager Devon Moore says the new bridge was designed to fit with the new Eau Claire public realm plan.
"The elevation of this bridge is raised up a metre and a half, so that gives us our flood mitigation that we wanted," he said.
"The bridge is also six meters wide, so we've made it significantly wider than the original bridge. Hopefully that allows … more Calgarians to be able to enjoy it."
Moore said the new bridge was also designed to highlight the natural surroundings and be integrated with the park environment.
"A fun example of this is a bee habitat that was included at the north end of the bridge to support the pollination and naturalization of the park space," he said in a release.
The bridge is named for its sister city Jaipur, the capital of India's Rajasthan state.
The city says the bridge was designed with the origin of its name in mind and the project team worked with the Jaipur-Calgary Foundation to ensure it was respectful of it.
We were honoured in 1994 to have Maharaj (Prince) Jai Singh come to Calgary, especially for the naming of the bridge Jaipur. I am certain that the bridge will carry on the respect honoured that day and serve well the needs of those who travel across the bridge — it holds the very important role of proving a connection in the heart of downtown Calgary," said Omkar Nath Channan, president of the foundation.