Jack hammers, shears and excavators – Watch video of the Bloor Street West rail bridge demolition

Construction on the Davenport Diamond Guideway project plows ahead with a recent demolition. The project includes the replacement of the Bloor Street West rail bridge between Lansdowne and Symington, beginning with the demolition of the west half. And we captured all the action with close-up photos and a time-bending video.

Think of this as a bit of a ‘time span’. Recently, crews took down half the Bloor Street West rail bridge, installed safety railing and restored the road in just one night.

And we’ve managed to get a rare vantage point on the quick work, thanks to a time-lapse video that compresses it down into about 50 seconds.

It’s all part of the Davenport Diamond Guideway project, which supports future two-way, all-day train service on the Barrie line.

At the start of the work, to make sure it was performed safely, fall restraints and harnesses were used as workers needed to approach the leading edge. Of course, there was pre and post demo work to be done. Since only half the bridge was being demolished, and there’s an active rail line on top, the remaining half needed a little TLC.

Image shows tractors near the bridge.
All systems go – demolition about to commence (Metrolinx photo).

Prior to the demolition, Soncin Construction added bracings on the east columns for additional support and put in place a track protection system that retains the ballast above. Then on demolition night, York Demolition came in and took down half the bridge structure. Following that, Soncin was there to immediately install the safety railing.

Tractors work on the bridge.
Demolition shears and excavators with jack hammer attachments are used to tear down the steel bridge structure (Metrolinx photo).

Talk about good connections.

For now, GO trains will continue to travel on the east side of the bridge. Once the west half is built back up and new track is installed, GO Transit will move the trains over and do it all over again on the east half of the bridge.

Workers cut metal with a torch under the bridge.
Crews work on the underside of the bridge with cutting tools. (Metrolinx photo).
A worker cuts metal on a bridge.
The elegant side of demolition – a worker fine-tunes the cut lines on the bridge. (Metrolinx photo)
Tractors work near the bridge
Crunch time – Demolition shears are used to break down the rubble and clean up the road. (Metrolinx photo)

For more information on the Davenport Diamond Guideway project and to get the latest updates, sign up for our Toronto West weekly e-blast here or follow us @GOExpansion.

You can also connect with the community relations team at TorontoWest@metrolinx.com

Story by Teresa Ko, Metrolinx communications senior advisor