Just over two years ago, the Harmer pedestrian and cycling bridge (now called Jackie Holzman bridge) over the Queensway was removed so that it could be replaced for a new one. The old one was at the end of its life cycle and not meeting current standards for accessibility anymore.
I personally hardly used the bridge, but it is being used by many people (including many school kids) north and south of the Queensway. Holland Ave is a more direct route for me and I find Holland Ave very doable to bike.
Jackie Holzman bridge
The bridge was built by the Tomlinson Group at a cost of 13.5 million dollars. The ramps were completely custom built by hand, one bucket of concrete at a time. It looked painfully slow to me, but I guess that is just the way one builds bridges.
Last week I checked out the bridge, now called the Jackie Holzman bridge after a former mayor of Ottawa. Ms. Holzman was the first Jewish woman and third woman to become Mayor of Ottawa (1991 to 1997). Yes, there was a time Jim Watson wasn’t mayor, kids. Ms. Holzman was at the opening of the bridge (I always thought you had to be dead if something is named after you) and at 85, fit as a fiddle.
The olde bridge looked pretty decrepit as you can see in this image: move the slider for the before and after bridge:
I wrote a blog two years ago with some rambling about policies for detours. The old Harmer bridge makes a cameo appearance in the discussion about adding safe temporary lanes on Holland.
Below are photos I took during the progress of the construction and the final built.
Here is a quick bike through of the bridge (I sped up the video a bit):