The Laurier Avenue Bridge is a bridge in Ottawa. It
carries Laurier Avenue over the Rideau Canal and also
Colonel By Drive and Queen Elizabeth Driveway. The green
steel arches makes the bridge one of the most recognizable
in Ottawa. Many of the events of Winterlude are held around
the bridge, and it is a common background to pictures of
skaters on the canal. The southern entrance to the
Department of National Defence Headquarters is located on
the eastern portion of the bridge.
The first bridge in the location was constructed in
1872. The current four lane bridge was originally built in
1900 and it was extended to the east in 1945. It was
originally operated by the National Capital Commission, but
in 1996 it and the Mackenzie King Bridge were handed over to
the city as the NCC did not have enough money for needed
maintenance. In 2001, the bridge was expanded and repaired.
The top surface was expanded by 50% allowing wider lanes,
dedicated bike paths, and much wider sidewalks. The area
around the bridge was also beautified with landscaping and
new stairs connecting to the bridge.