LaSalle Causeway to remain closed during influx of visitors to Kingston for eclipse viewing

Drone view of the LaSalle Causeway shows the damages that occurred during the work that took place over the long weekend ending Sunday, Mar. 31, 2024. Photo via Aerosnapper Kingston.

One of the major arteries connecting downtown Kingston to the city’s east end will remain closed through Monday, Apr. 8, 2024, the day the total solar eclipse takes place and up to 500,000 people are expected to travel to Kingston for it.

This news comes after Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC), the federal agency that oversees operations and maintenance of the LaSalle Causeway, confirmed that an “incident” during scheduled work on the bridge over the long weekend led to damages to the bascule bridge and the complete closure of the causeway to all traffic. The incident occurred on Saturday, Mar. 30, 2024, and the City of Kingston announced the complete closure of the bridge the following day.

Today, Thursday, Apr. 4, 2024, the City of Kingston issued a traffic advisory for residents regarding the day of the eclipse. The information from that advisory has all been included in the Kingstonist Guide to the 2024 Total Solar Eclipse, however, the City noted that the LaSalle Causeway would remain closed throughout the day of the eclipse, Monday, Apr. 8, 2024.

A more direct view of the damages to the LaSalle Causeway, which occurred due to an “incident” on Saturday, Mar. 30, 2024, according to Public Services and Procurement Canada. Photo via Aerosnapper Kingston.

Kingstonist reached out to PSPC to confirm this information, and to inquire if any further information about the damages to the bridge, what caused them, and an estimated time for repairs and reopening. PSPC responded indicating that a press release would be issued in the coming hours.

Many readers have asked how the City of Kingston has come to the estimate of 500,000 people coming to the area for the eclipse. Kingstonist inquired about that with the City, and received the following response.

“Our projection for potential visitors to Kingston grew as we get closer to the eclipse. We assessed the below factors to help plan appropriately and be prepared for an influx of people. We are also in communication with other municipalities. Niagara, for example, is also in the path of totality and is confident in their projection of one million visitors,” the City of Kingston communications team relayed.

“Should the weather be unfavourable in another region, some people may choose to come to Kingston instead for this once-in-a-lifetime event.”

A full video via Aerosnapper Kingston on YouTube looks at what possibly led to the closure of the LaSalle Causeway via drone footage, which can be viewed here.

Update (Thursday, Apr. 4, 2024, at 4:10 p.m.):

PSPC has now confirmed that the LaSalle Causeway will be closed on Monday, Apr. 8, 2024, the day of the eclipse, and is advising this will be a “long-term closure.” More details are available in our coverage here.

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