The Confederation Bridge crosses the Northumberland Strait and connects the provinces of New Brunsiwck and Prince Edward Island. The bridge is Canada’s longest fixed-link crossing and the longest bridge in the world to cover ice-covered water.

Quick Facts

  • When was the bridge opened? 1997.
  • How long is it? 12.9-km.
  • How tall is it? 40-m above the Strait (60-m at the central span).
  • How long did it take to build? 3.5 years.
  • Who maintains it? Strait Crossing Bridge Limited.
  • Why is it curved? To prevent a “hypnotic effect” while driving across it.
  • How much does it cost to go across? http://confederationbridge.com/tolls-fees/tolls-fees.html
  • Where can I get the best view? Our on-site observation tower!

Confederation Bridge across the Northumberland Strait to Prince Edward Island, as seen from the observation tower at the Cape Jourimain Nature Centre

History

Discussions regarding building a bridge to connect Prince Edward Island (PEI) to the mainland had been ongoing since the late 1800s. Early proposals looked at developing a railway tunnel under the Strait, but this idea was later abandoned due to concerns over engineering and costs.

In 1966, the Government of Canada moved forward with a development plan for a bridge, getting so far as to construct a causeway connecting Tenholm and Jourimain Island; however, this endeavour was ultimately abandoned. It wasn’t until 1987, after receiving a number of development proposals, that the Government of Canada began conducting a new feasibility study for a fixed-link crossing.

In 1988, a plebiscite was conducted on PEI, which resulted in a majority vote in favour of constructing a bridge. Cape Jourimain in NB and Borden-Carleton in PEI were selected as the two end points due to being the shortest distance between the two provinces.

In 1993, Strait Crossing Bridge Limited  began a complex, four-year construction process. The 12.9 km, multi-span cantilever bridge was completed in 1996 and officially opened to the public on May 31st, 1997.

Find out more about the Confederation Bridge at: http://www.confederationbridge.com/

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