‘Kissing Bridge’ renovation approved by regional council

A famous bridge with a unique name in Waterloo Region is set to receive a makeover.

A plan for the West Montrose Covered Bridge – or the Kissing Bridge – was approved by regional council Wednesday.

The Kissing Bridge is Ontario’s last remaining covered bridge and it’s become a local landmark where tourists go to take photos and walk across.

The bridge was first constructed in 1881 completely with wood. Some steel trusses were installed in 1950’s, however the last major renovation took place in 1999.

Example of the changes that will be made at the Kissing Bridge. / Region of Waterloo

Regional staff determined that a rehabilitation is needed to keep the bridge safe for its patrons.

That includes removing the aforementioned steel trusses, replacing damaged wood trusses, and reinforcing the bridge to be able to accommodate 10 tonnes. The region still plans to keep the three-tonne load limit though, which will be restrict large trucks, school buses, EMS vehicles and even some pick-up trucks.

An overhead height restriction bar will also be place on the north approach to prevent oversized vehicles from damaging the bridge, while the south approach will be narrowed with guiderails.

Concept for overhead height bar restricting large vehicles. / Region of Waterloo

A large portion of project will be covered by the federal and provincial government through the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program.

Construction is expected to begin next spring and be completed in one year.

More photos of the preferred concept design as well as alternatives can be found here.

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