An effort to save the most significantly historic pieces of the Cull Drain Bridge near Bright’s Grove appears to have been successful, with Sarnia City Council agreeing unanimously in favour of a salvage effort.
A presentation by Steve Loxton, a member of Friends of Cull Drain Bridge, made a persuasive argument that the trusses, which are the integral part of the structure was worth saving. Loxton’s presentation can be seen here (a public Google docs file).
The cost of a removal/salvage of the structure, which has been determined to be unsafe, is said to be $226,413—more than double the cost of the estimated cost of a demolition.
The Friends of Cull Drain Bridge say they have already raised more than $3,000 for the effort with continuing fundraising planned for the future.
Councillor Mike Kelch, who at the last public meeting had expressed words of caution for any plan that would spend more money than necessary, said his mind was changed, especially given the outpouring of community support and involvement.
The Sarnia Heritage Committee sent a letter to City Council in which it expressed its support for the effort to restore the trusses.
The Cull Drain Bridge was built in 1910 by a Sarnia-based company, Jenks-Dresser, and is a rare surviving example of the design then used across Ontario.