OPENING OF NEW LONDON THOROUGHFARES.
Two Irishmen have been prominently identified with the construction of the new thoroughfares of Aldwych and Kingsway, London, which were recently opened by King Edward. Maurice Fitzmaurice, C. M. G., M. I. C. E., engineer-in-chief to the London county council, prepared the plans; and for the last two years the works have been conducted under the supervision of Pierce F. Purcell, B. E., engineer to the works department of the county council. Mr. Fitzmaurice comes of and old Kerry family. Mr. Purcell is a son of Captain Purcell, chief of the Dublin fire brigadewell known to fire chiefs in the United States and Canada. He was educated in Castleknock college, and is only twenty-five years of age. He graduated with distinction in Trinity college, Dublin, of which he is a senior moderator and B. A. The following particulars will give some idea of the nature of the undertaking involved in the construction of these two great thoroughfares; About twenty-eight acres of streets and slums were purchased and demolished, nearly 7,000 persons being dispossessed and re-housed in better dwellings. Fifty-one public houses were abolished at a cost of $990,000, the licences being surrendered. The land and interests purchased cost $28,315,000. The estimated cost of the actual construction of the thoroughfare was $2,500,000. Ninety-four thousand cubic yards of earth had to be excavated and removed about ten miles down the river Thames. Thirty-six thousand cubic yards of concrete; 6,300,000 bricks, 1,600,000 wood blocks, and 2,700 tons of steel were used. The improvement wiped out several solid blocks of about the worst lot of firetraps in the city of London. Their removal is a source of the greatest relief to the London fire brigade.