This bridge story is about what we consider to be one of the most important innovations that will impact on what we can offer for golf courses, municipalities and other organizations with bridges over the next few years. It is about how we have developed a method to manufacture a simple fiberglass ‘skin’ (in a wood or other finish) to make old bridges ‘new’ and extend their lives by decades in some cases.
We have to give credit where it is due and acknowledge that this innovation was developed to respond to needs identified by some wonderful people at the Sirocco Golf Club in Calgary, Alberta. They were the first to push us in this direction. We first heard from Dean Clarke the Superintendent at Sirocco and later from Tom Ellison the General Manager at Sirocco.
They identified that they had 9 bridges that were still OK but going relatively fast. The substructures were fine but the decks were on the verge of needing replacement. Working together, we came up with the idea of smoothing the decks to the point where we could bond and seal a thin, custom-manufactured fiberglass skin (in a wood finish) to the existing decks. The process also involves sealing the joints of the ‘skins’ – which were made in sections to custom-fit over the entire deck.
This achieves a number of really important things:
The bridge looks ‘new’. Everything you can see is in fact new and the remainder is hidden.
The deck is now a low-maintenance, long-lasting fiberglass surface.
The deck and substructure are now sealed from any further moisture or UV exposure or penetration. The deterioration of the substructure will now virtually stop.
Pre & post coating shows the dramatic difference between the ‘before’ and ‘after’.
We are now working with the Sirocco team to complete the process on their remaining bridges. At the same time, we are extended the offer for this product and service to the broader market as our research tells us that there is substantial potential for this to be a huge benefit to many of our customers to allow them to save a lot of money.