Government of New Brunswick

1. Why is the project necessary?

The department routinely inspects all bridges across New Brunswick, including the Salmon River Bridge. Due to the bridge’s deteriorating condition, the department recommended in 2019 to replace the bridge within 5 years. The bridge is currently being inspected every six months to monitor its condition.

2. How long will the project take to complete?

The department plans to begin work on the project in the Fall of 2022. The project is anticipated to be completed in July 2024.

3. How long will the bridge be closed?

The department will close the current bridge in Summer 2023 and plans to open the new bridge in July 2024. The public will be updated regarding exact dates.

4. Why can’t the current bridge remain open while the new bridge is constructed?

The department explored several options for construction of the new bridge. These options included:

  • Option 1 – a new bridge south of existing bridge between existing bridge and marina;
  • Option 2 – a new bridge slightly northeast of existing bridge between existing bridge and train bridge;
  • Option 3 – a new bridge on the existing alignment; and
  • Option 4 – a new bridge slightly northeast of existing train bridge requiring a new road through wooded area.

The decision was made to construct the new bridge along the same alignment because it will have the least impact to adjacent properties, residential & business & recreation. As well, it will minimize environmental impact to adjacent wetlands & pollinator habitat.

5. Why was the detour chosen?

The department looked at many factors in considering the preferred detour route such as length and condition of roadway. In addition, consultations took place with many stakeholders. The detour along Route 116 and Route 123 has been determined to be the best option.

The department has also taken steps to minimize impact on the Chipman area such as:

  • assisting to secure an additional fire truck to be stationed on west side of bridge to respond to calls;
  • looking into feasibility of shuttle service for essential services at the Medical Center, Community Care & Food Bank;
  • ensuring ambulance response will have services on both sides of the bridge and RCMP services are still provided; and
  • working with the school district to modify school & bus schedules accordingly.
  • DTI Operations Group to evaluate and implement measures as required to ensure traffic safety on the detour route.

6. Why can’t a temporary bridge be used to avoid the detour?

Additional property acquisition and environmental impacts of putting a temporary structure in place would have extended the project timeline and added significant costs.

7. What is the department doing for pre-project work on adjacent routes?

In preparation for the start of the bridge project, the department is upgrading the detour route such as raising the road along a stretch of Route 116 near Briggs Corner, replacing a culvert on Route 123 and reinforcing of the bridge deck located near Briggs Corner.

8. What are the benefits of the new bridge?

The community, visitors and industry will benefit from a new bridge that has a 75-year design life. In addition, the more resilient bridge will better respond to industry needs and provide more safety to motorists.