Last August, the University of Waterloo Bridges to Prosperity (B2P) team sent six undergraduate students and an engineer to Chimore, Bolivia for three weeks, to build a 90 meter span pedestrian footbridge.
Joining the UW team for the first time, was the newly-formed University of Toronto's B2P chapter. The entire team, composed of over 30 students, had spent a year planning the project. Along with raising $30,000 for the entire project, the team diligently worked on creating a design that was well suited for the low-sloping, sandy terrain. By creating a realistic schedule, establishing safety procedures, and developing a construction plan, the team was exposed to many of the challenges faced by project managers.
The constructed footbridge serves over 500 people and now allows year-round access to vital resources in the region. The children can attend the schools in the local town, and the farmers are able to access markets, as the main economy of the region is agriculture and fish-farming. The community now has direct access to the hospitals located in the major cities of La Paz and Cochabamba.