Cross Roads Bridge in need of repairs
Concrete erosion, open railing leads to concerns by some in Carbonear
Two 10-metre long rusty railings, each containing five support posts, are the only barriers preventing pedestrians, bike riders, skateboarders and possibly vehicles, from dropping two metres off the side of one of the oldest bridges in Carbonear into the dark, rushing water below.
Although the water below Cross Roads Bridge is only a few feet deep, landing on sharp rocks or being taken by a current is possibility.
The bridge, which connects Cross Roads to Pond Side Road, has been a part of the town for around five decades. This structure has effectively allowed residents to cross Island Pond Brook, which runs into Rossiter’s Pond.
But in recent weeks some concerns have been raised about the age, condition and safety of the bridge.
Although some say it doesn’t look particularly safe — chunks of concrete have eroded from the edges and all metal and steel are orange coloured from rust — the town’s director of operations and public works Brian O’Grady told The Compass the bridge is sound.
“The bridge issues are mainly aesthetic,” he said.
Underneath the deteriorating concrete are seven large steel Ibeams reinforced with rebar — all covered in rust. The beams are fastened to large concrete bases on each side of the structure. Beyond the railings, where the concrete bases begin, is a drop-off of some two metres into the brook.
“The bridge issues are mainly aesthetic.”
— Brian O’Grady
The railing on the west side of the bridge, showing the two-metre wide and one-metre high gaps between each paling.
The east side of the bridge has a path on each side where children often play during the summer.
Carbonear’s Deputy Mayor Frank Butt and director of operations and public works Brian O’Grady stop by the Cross Roads Bridge Jan. 21 to take a look at the structure.
A view from the west side of the Cross Roads Bridge.
Rebar is visible on both sides of the bridge where concrete has eroded over the years.
This is the Cross Roads Bridge from the east side, where water runs rapidly. There are twometre drop-offs on each side of the railing with no barricade.