The Trout Creek bridge in Summerland was constructed in 1913. A false-work tower was constructed in order to allow for the work to proceed. The bridge allowed the community to have train service. (Photo courtesy of the Summerland Museum)

Summerland railway bridge was constructed in 1913

False-work tower had to be constructed twice

In the spring of 1913, the Kettle Valley Railway built the bridge over Trout Creek Canyon.

To install the metal bridge work, construction of a false-work tower was required. The original height of the tower was 49 metres or 160 feet.

That year, the spring freshet completely destroyed the structure. The false-work tower was rebuilt in June.

The bridge was completed by the first week in October.

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The 1913 estimated cost of construction was $250,000.

Initially, the railway was designed to bypass Summerland, but in 1910, James Ritchie, reeve of Summerland, requested the railway not to bypass the community.

This request was turned down.

Ritchie then surveyed the area, using a carpenter’s level, and designed a route that would pass near the present research station.

The first train crossed the bridge on Oct. 25, 1913.

The first train to pass through Summerland was on May 31, 1915.

More than 2,000 people stood at the site of the train station to see the train. Schools were dismissed early and many businesses were closed for the day to allow people to watch the train.

This train consisted of a steam engine and its baggage car, a first class coach and a sleeper. It arrived in Summerland at 3:59 p.m.

In 1915, a trip from Summerland to Vancouver took 23 hours, 20 minutes.

The last passenger train to pass through Summerland came through the community Jan. 16, 1964.

In 1976, the railway station building was used to house the Summerland Museum. The station building was dismantled in 1985.

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From 1915 until 1964, Summerland was served by passenger trains. Today, the Kettle Valley Railway Society operates a tourist train service along a portion of the track. (Photo courtesy of the Summerland Museum)

The Trout Creek Trestle connected Summerland with the rest of the Kettle Valley Railway line. The bridge was constructed in 1913. (Photo courtesy of the Summerland Museum)

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