Parks Canada

Parks Canada

August 07, 2009 11:00 ET

The Designer of the Jacques Cartier Bridge Commemorated

Government of Canada celebrates the national historic significance of Philip Louis Pratley

MONTREAL, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - Aug. 7, 2009) - On behalf of the Honourable Jim Prentice, Canada's Environment Minister and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, the Honourable Pierre Claude Nolin, Senator, today unveiled a plaque commemorating the national historic significance of engineer Philip Louis Pratley, designer of the Jacques Cartier Bridge.

"Throughout his career, Pratley's dedication and imagination enabled him to build great structures," said Senator Nolin. By pushing the boundaries of engineering and experimenting with new techniques, he constructed bridges that are still among the most famous in the country. Pratley's great achievements, in Canada and abroad, make him an engineer whose talent deserves to be recognized."

Canada's foremost designer of long-span highway bridges in the first half of the 20th century, P. L. Pratley created a number of exceptional works that have become Canadian landmarks. During his career as a consulting engineer in Montreal he used the latest design theories and structural materials to build elegant, state-of-the-art structures. Several of his outstanding bridges have become widely recognized as symbols of their cities, including the Lions Gate in Vancouver, the Jacques Cartier in Montreal, and the Angus L. Macdonald in Halifax. His monumental projects link the highways of the nation from coast to coast.

"We rarely give a passing thought to the engineers that designed the bridges we cross. However, some of history's great names are behind these mammoth structures and their exceptional talent is deserving of our recognition," stated Minister Prentice. "Philip Louis Pratley is an excellent example, and this plaque will ensure that all will recall the significance of the engineer that designed several of the most well-known bridges in the country."

The Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, established in 1919, advises the Minister of the Environment on issues relating to sites, people, and events of national historic importance. The presentation of a commemorative plaque represents official recognition of their value for Canadians.

(Also issued on the Internet at under the heading Media Room)

Contact Information

  • Parks Canada
    Melissa Larose
    Communications Advisor