New Brunswick

Moncton has its own 'love lock bridge' and its own controversy

Some romantic Monctonians are not happy about the city’s decision to cut about 200 locks off the Halls Creek pedestrian bridge, which connects Moncton and Dieppe.

Some argue there was no need to cut the dozens of locks off 'love lock bridge'

The City of Moncton removed about 200 locks from the Halls Creek pedestrian bridge earlier in the spring. (CBC)

Some romantic Monctonians are not happy about the city's decision to cut about 200 locks off the Halls Creek pedestrian bridge, which connects Moncton and Dieppe.

The locks were put on the bridge by couples as a symbol of the permanence of their love.

"I think the City of Moncton's decision to cut the locks off the bridge on the waterfront walking trail is ridiculous," said Larissa Dawn, who complained on the city's Facebook page.

"I think the 'love lock bridge' added character to our downtown. Many people had locks professionally engraved.

The Halls Creek pedestrian bridge connects Moncton to Dieppe. (CBC)
"While on a walk one evening there was a newlywed couple having photos done on the bridge — which I'm sure they had placed a lock there, only to have it removed within a few days."

The tradition is well-known from Paris, where the Pont des Arts bridge famously had a million locks clamped to it before officials removed them in 2015.

"It's kind of dumb because it adds, in my opinion, it adds culture to the City of Dieppe and stuff," said Peter Crawford, who was walking on the bridge with his girlfriend.

"It's kind of a nice history thing, especially for tourists if they walk through and go, 'Oh wow, this is cool, look at what all these people from this community did."'

Crawford said he hasn't put a lock on the bridge before, but now that the city removed them, he will put one on just to prove a point.

Safety issue

The City of Moncton's communications co-ordinator, Isabelle LeBlanc, said the move was made out of a concern for safety.

Since the locks were removed from the bridge, a few more have already been added. (CBC)
In an email to CBC, she wrote, "The locks were taken down a few weeks ago as preventive maintenance and in response to vandalism related to defacing public infrastructure.

"Having a number of locks on the bridge adds significant weight to the structure and chips the paint which leads to deterioration due to rust."

Some of the people complaining said the number of locks was not enough to damage the bridge.

The city removed about 200 pounds of locks, which took about two hours, according to LeBlanc's statement.

In 2013, Downtown Moncton Inc. set up a love lock fence in Aberdeen Park, and LeBlanc is urging people to use that structure instead.

However, a few padlocks with messages and names have reappeared on the bridge of late.