Historic Sites of Manitoba: Louise Steel Through-Truss Bridge (Red River, Winnipeg)

The first railway bridge over the Red River in Winnipeg was built in 1881 and the Louise Bridge was later converted for automobile traffic.

In 1910, this steel through-truss structure was built as a replacement for the original bridge. It consisted of two outer spans measuring 203 feet long by 26 feet wide with a central swing span measuring 277 feet long by 26 feet wide. The swing span was designed to pivot to allow ships to pass underneath. The concrete piers were constructed by William Newman and Company while the steel structure was built by the Algoma Steel Bridge Company. The bridge was built at a cost of about $126,000. The bridge originally featured two sets of railway tracks for the Winnipeg Electric Company’s streetcars but these were removed after the system was decommissioned in 1955.

View of the original Louise Bridge

View of the original Louise Bridge (early 1880s) by F. V. Bingham
Source: Gordon Goldsborough, 2013-0094

Drawing of the original Louise Bridge

Drawing of the original Louise Bridge (circa 1889)
Source: Souvenir of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Toronto News Company, 1889.

The present Louise Bridge constructed in 1910

The present Louise Bridge constructed in 1910 (April 2015)
Source: Gordon Goldsborough

Aerial view of the Louise Bridge

Aerial view of the Louise Bridge (August 2019)
Source: George Penner

Louise Bridge

Louise Bridge (March 2020)
Source: Rose Kuzina

Site Coordinates (lat/long): N49.90550, W97.11378
denoted by symbol on the map above

See also:

Memorable Manitobans: William Newman (1866-1952)

Manitoba Business: Algoma Steel Bridge Company


“Plans for new bridges - Louise Bridge,” Winnipeg Tribune, 30 April 1910, page 3.

“Expence not warranted,” Winnipeg Tribune, 17 May 1910, page 1.

“New Louise Bridge,” Winnipeg Tribune, 24 September 1910, page 5.

We thank Rose Kuzina and George Penner for providing additional information used here.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough and Jordan Makichuk.

Page revised: 15 July 2023

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