Point Ellice Bridge

The City appreciates the public’s patience as we complete important maintenance on a key
connection in our city to ensure the Point Ellice Bridge will continue operating for decades to come.  


September 4 - Update

Work to replace the existing asphalt bridge deck surface started this month. Paving on the north side of the bridge deck is now underway.  Traffic will shift over to the newly paved portion of the bridge and vehicle direction will remain unchanged with one-way vehicle traffic continuing westbound into Victoria West.  A temporary pedestrian sidewalk has been constructed on the north side of the bridge, while work on the south side takes place.

The Point Ellice Bridge Rehabilitation Project is still on schedule, with major substantial completion still anticipated for the end of October. If you have questions about the project email: engage@victoria.ca

July 26 - Update

The next phase of work on the Point Ellice Bridge will start in late July and continue for approximately 10 weeks. For this phase of construction, the lower area of the bridge deck has been wrapped and sealed in order for crews to begin the paint removal process by sandblasting.

Crews will sandblast the steel structure in accordance with the City’s noise bylaws from Monday to Friday from 7 am – 7 pm  and Saturdays from 10 am – 7 pm. While this work will create noise, it needs to be completed within a short timeframe, as Transport Canada has provided Seismic 2000 a five-week permit to complete all the work before the scaffolding must be removed from above the navigation channel.

Due to these schedule restraints, the contractor has also been granted a noise variance to work from 8:30am to 7pm on weekends and holidays outside the City by-laws including: 

  • Saturday/Sunday July 27/28
  • Saturday/Sunday August 3/4
  • Monday August 5
  • Saturday/Sunday August 10/11

This Point Ellice Bridge Rehabilitation Project is still on schedule, with major substantial completion still scheduled for mid-October. If you have questions about the Point Ellice Bridge Rehabilitation Project email: engage@victoria.ca


What’s Happening?

The Point Ellice Bridge will be closed to vehicle traffic in the eastbound direction (towards downtown) starting Tuesday May 21 until approximately the end of October. The closure is necessary to safely complete comprehensive upgrades to the bridge to ensure it serves the community for decades to come.

To minimize overall disruption to the public and project costs, a number of maintenance activities are planned to occur above and below the bridge deck.  Above the bridge deck, the asphalt roadway will be removed, repairs will be made to the concrete deck and the asphalt will be replaced.  The railings on the bridge will also be removed and repainted. 

Under the bridge, the existing lead paint will be removed and all of the structural steel will be repainted.  Works will also be undertaken to minimize future corrosion of the steel to keep the bridge in good health for years to come. This work is part of the Council-approved 2019 Capital Works Program to renew aging city roads and sidewalk for current and future needs.

The contract has been awarded to Seismic 2000 Construction Ltd. and the project cost is $6.1 million with a combined $2.4 million of funding provided by the Provincial and Federal governments. 


What You Need To Know:

In order to complete the necessary upgrades on the Point Ellice Bridge, the eastbound lane across the bridge (towards downtown) will be closed for up to five months starting on May 21, 2019. Multiple options for managing traffic were explored and the eastbound Bay Street closure provides the lowest overall impacts to traffic flow, maintains emergency vehicle access to Victoria West, and also provides predictability to the travelling public and businesses.  Changes will be made to traffic signal operations adjacent the Johnson Street Bridge to help accommodate the increased traffic.

Pedestrian and wheelchair access will be maintained during the project, while eastbound cyclists must dismount and walk their bikes across as a pedestrian. Emergency services have been consulted with as part of the traffic management process to minimze disruptions to service. Full bridge closures will still be necessary on
rare occasions during the project and will be communicated as information becomes available.  

The public is advised to use caution while travelling near the construction zone and obey all signage. Local access will be maintained adjacent to the bridge to businesses and homes in the area and the City and its contractor will work to minimize inconveniences during the course of the project.

Point Ellice Bridge History:

The existing Point Ellice Bridge superstructure was constructed in 1956–57 on the foundations and abutments of the pre-existing bridge. The bridge consists of four equal spans, with a total length of approximately 183m (600 ft.).

The bridge received a seismic upgrade in 2001–2002, which included some reinforcement of the masonry piers, replacement of the main bridge bearings, and work to seal joints in the roadway surface. Through regular inspection it was determined that the structural steel is in need of resurfacing. 



Additional Information

Please note that the Johnson Street Bridge will remain open and staff are working with the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority to limit bridge lifts during peak morning and evening vehicle traffic rush hours. Changes will be made to traffic signal operations around the Johnson Street Bridge to help accommodate the anticipated increase in traffic volumes.

BC Transit and emergency services have been consulted with as part of the traffic management process to minimize disruptions to service.