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Kelvin Aqueduct
Kelvindale and Maryhill, Glasgow
associated engineer
Robert Whitworth
date  1787 - 1790
UK era  Georgian  |  category  Aqueduct  |  reference  NS560689
The Kelvin Aqueduct is a major structure on John Smeaton's Forth & Clyde Canal, and was the largest aqueduct in Europe in 1790. It carries the waterway over the River Kelvin on the west side of Glasgow.
The masonry aqueduct is 121.9m long and 20.7m high, with four arches each of 15.2m span. It has curved retaining walls adjoining the water channel that act as horizontal (lateral) arches — causing significant forces at the piers, which are resisted by substantial buttresses. The canal narrows as it runs through the aqueduct.
Robert Whitworth, its designer, was one of Smeaton's supervising engineers on the main canal project, which links the east and west coasts of Scotland. William Gibb, founder of the company that became Sir Alexander Gibb & Partners, and John Muir were the contractors. They also built Maryhill Locks.
The project cost 9,058, some 2,000 over budget, and was reputed to have bankrupted Gibb in his efforts to complete the work within the contracted time.
The aqueduct is a Scheduled Ancient Monument.
Main contractors: William Gibb, John Muir
Research: ECPK
reference sources   CEH SLB

Kelvin Aqueduct