Prince Edward Island joined the Canadian Confederation in 1873 and at that time, the Federal Government promised the Islanders continuous transport between PEI and the mainland. In the early years, this was sometimes threatening to life and limb, particularly in winter when small boats were muscled over and through the ice of Northumberland Strait linking New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island.
By 1917, a permanent ferry service was implemented across the Northumberland Strait which lasted for more than 80 years. However, lobbying for a bridge crossing for vehicles has been a factor for many years and finally, the technology of the 90's made the construction of almost a 13 kilometer bridge possible.
In June of 1997, the Confederation Bridge, linking Cape Jourimain, New Brunswick, and Borden-Carleton, Prince Edward Island, became a reality. Just prior to the first day of vehicle traffic, thousands of people lined up for a history making walk across the bridge. An aura of excitement gripped the participants even though the walk took much longer than the 12 minute drive over the S shaped bridge which spans 12.9 kilometers. As well, the trip is now much shorter in time than the previous 3 hour ferry voyage, plus the tolls are deemed to be reasonable. The 1997 rates for cars started at $35 and the 2010 rates are provided in the table below.
The Confederation Bridge is indeed a tribute to the Atlantic Provinces. Not only does it make exploring the scenery and peoples of this part of the Maritimes easier, it was constructed with the major part of the labour force and the main subcontractors coming from the area. It is presently the longest bridge in the world to cross ice-covered salt water. While the bridge only has two lanes, and a speed limit of 80 kilometers per hour, bridge patrol vehicles will assist motorists if they should encounter vehicle problems en route. In fact, emergency call boxes, equipped with telephones, fire extinguishers and an external alarm button, are located along the bridge at 750 meter intervals, all there to assist in safe passage. You will be part of history in the making if you choose to motor over this bridge, and as an added bonus, you will experience some of Canada's most scenic areas!
If your car is getting older and has made its last trip over the bridge, consider making a car donation to a worthy charity.
For more excellent information, you may contact Canada's Confederation Bridge
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