The Sir Ambrose Shea Lift Bridge


  • Vince Kerrivan Memorial University of Newfoundland


Costal Engineering, ENGI 8751, Case Study, Civil, Placentia, Lift Bridge, Bridge, Damage, Repairs, New lift bridge


The Sir Ambrose Shea Lift Bridge is located in Placentia, a community located on the western side of the Avalon Peninsula, Newfoundland. The bridge was constructed in 1961 and is at the end of its lifecycle. Construction of a replacement of the bridge is planned to begin in the spring 2013. The Sir Ambrose Shea Lift Bridge is one of a kind. The rare construction of a lift bridge was necessary to allow fishing boats to enter and leave Placentia gut, while allowing vehicles to drive between Jerseyside and Placentia. The difficult environmental conditions of wind, waves and tide created a challenging design for the bridge. Planning the replacement bridge has led to a variety of problems. Initial estimates to complete the project were double of what was originally planned. The designs had to be revised to reduce costs. Also, to keep the bridge viable, short term repairs were necessary for the 51 year old bridge which considerably slowed down traffic in the community. Weight restrictions were placed on the bridge, banning heavy commercial vehicles from using it. The following case study will highlight the history of crossing the Placentia gut, challenges with building and maintaining the Sir Ambrose Shea, damages and repairs to the bridge, and a description of the new bridge to be constructed in 2013.







Coastal and Ocean Engineering (ENGI.8751)