County buys a
bridge for a buck
reprinted from Red Deer
Advocate (Brenda Kossowan) December 23, 2009
Old CPR Trestle
over Red Deer River a Heritage Site
An enormous relic from what used to be the Alberta Central Railway
is set to get a new owner.
Located just off of the C&E Trail southwest of Red Deer, the Mintlaw
Bridge spans the Red Deer River adjacent to acreage subdivisions
west of Springbrook and the Red Deer Regional Airport.
On Tuesday, Red Deer County council agreed unanimously to buy the
97-year-old bridge for $1 and issue a tax receipt for $8.8 million
to its current owner, Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd.
The purchase does not include railway right-of-way leading to the
bridge, which is valued at $8.8 million in its current state and has
an estimated lifespan of 80 years.
While the trestle still stands and the bridge deck remains intact,
the rails have been gone for a number of years.
In presenting CPR's offer to council, assistant county manager Rick
Henderson said the county would acquire a valuable asset that has
already been recognized as a heritage site with significance and
The county has been given an inspection report that details repairs
needed, estimating that it would cost $2.1 million.
The report estimates that building a replacement, without rails,
would cost $24.6 million.
Mayor Earl Kinsella said it will be up to a future council to decide
what to do with the bridge.
A pair of horses
run through a pasture below the Mintlaw Bridge about 10 km
southwest of the city Tuesday; Red Deer County has purchased
Alberta's second longest railway bridge* from CP Rail.
by Randy Fiedler, Red Deer Advocate
* Webmaster Note: The Mintlaw Bridge
is actually the fifth longest railway bridge in Alberta but the
second longest CPR steel trestle railway bridge and the longest
railway bridge in Central Alberta.
Railway Bridges of Alberta
more about the
Alberta Central Railway and
ACR Linear Park
Mintlaw Bridge essential to region's railroad
(Red Deer Express March 2010)