One for the road: 70,000 wine bottles used during construction of Montreal bridges

The city of Montreal has teamed up with the state-run Quebec Alcohol Corporation and Sherbrooke University to build two bridges using concrete containing 70,000 wine bottles.

The use of ground glass as an admixture, which the city council described as a world first, will allow the substitution of 40,000kg of cement.

The two Darwin bridges are to be located on Nuns’ Island in the Saint Lawrence River. The first is due to open in November 2020.

The use of glass powder in cement has been approved by international material testing organisations ASTM International and CSA Group.

Sylvain Ouellet, a Montreal councillor, said: "We are constantly on the lookout for innovative and sustainable ways to build safe, resistant infrastructures while also reducing our ecological footprint.

"We have been using glass powder in sidewalk construction since 2011, and the results are conclusive. We are extremely proud to expand the use of these new, effective and ecological techniques to build a more resilient and greener city for all Montrealers."

Arezki Tagnit-Hamou, a professor at Sherbrooke University, added: "Being backed by a standard democratises the use of glass powder by companies."

The concrete’s performance will be monitored by Montreal city and Sherbrooke University officials over the coming years.

Image courtesy of Bignai/Dreamstime

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  1. Would love to know exactly how engineers factor this into load bearing, etc.

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