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Pier Pavilion to be Removed

What's left of the pier pavilion, several columns, will be removed in two weeks.

City leaders discussed the idea of replacing the roof of the pier pavilion, which sits across the street from Gulfport On The Rocks, with metal and even a removable fabric in August.

However, on Tuesday night, during the regular city council meeting, council decided to move forward with demolishing the columns. Public Works Director Don Sopak says they'll be taken down in two weeks.

Sopak had informed city council members of their options during an August council meeting. He said high winds finally ripped apart the roof of the structure and it was time to look at their options.

Gulfport city leaders already approved $55,000 to replace the pavilion before Mother Nature damaged it in March. The old design, which was built in the 1950s, was far from up to code and the roof was made of two pieces of quarter inch plywood, glued together and formed into hoops.

Options for construction at that time included replicating the old design with a metal roof for $129,847, redesigning the pavilion with a removable fabric system for $50,000 or demolish the columns and wait on reconstruction.

During the August meeting Council member Dan Liedtke stated he wanted to bring forward other options in an effort to stay within the budget.

City leaders discussed the issue Tuesday night. The result, the columns will go. Unless the city plans to reconstruct the pavilion, the columns are a safety hazard standing on their own at this time.

Council member Dan Liedtke, who brought forward other designs, says the final decision was "sensible considering the circumstances."

"Regardless of the cost, the intereste on council and among Gulfport citizens was not great enough to save the pavilion," Liedtke adds.

Liedtke says the decision allow Pennies for Pinellas funds to be used for other capital improvements.

"For example, the Recreation Center is in need of repairs and can use a new paint job. At this time it seems very wise to re-enforce our cities existing assets instead of creating new maintenance items. Going forward we will be looking to the city manager for his recommendations on if and where to invest the remaining Pennies for Pinellas funds."

Related Articles:

Should a New Pier Pavilion Have a Metal or Fabric Roof?

Phil October 18, 2012 at 10:27 PM
Please don't let your family swim or get their feet wet, the water is NOT clean and like i said the boats nearby the shore dump their human waste plus other things are dumped into the water from storm run off. The water has a high fecal count and bacteria count, all this leads to some form of sickness eventually. NOT a place to swim.... or get your feet wet.
CJ October 20, 2012 at 03:01 AM
...well, thanks for the advice...I know it is good advice, but whatever kills me someday is not going to be wading down there or swimming down in the park area. Believe me...I prefer the Gulf beaches...but if they let the seaweed sit on the shore and left all the trash on the Gulf beaches like they do in Gulfport beaches...then they really would not look all that much different from each other. ''DAILY'' clean up by the Gulfport City Workers would make the beach area loook much more appealing. What's hard to believe is not that people can wade and swim down there without quite as much to fear as you say...but to believe we can drink the water out of our tap knowing how it starts out before water treatments is what's hard to believe. Go ahead Phil...pick a hot day and go out there and enjoy the water. Sounds like you really prefer heated swimming pools with the cage covers. I hear ya...they sure are nice...but go down to the beach, get in, and enjoy it like a kid again. You only live once.
CJ October 20, 2012 at 03:02 AM
..by the way...anyone have any ideas why I have sores all over my body and my hiar is falling out?
CJ December 12, 2012 at 06:59 PM
The area where the old columns have been removed looks much better now. I wish they had been in my yard so I could have put a new roof on them myself....but it does look better down down there.
Cherlene Willis December 12, 2012 at 07:02 PM
Yes - thanks for the update CJ. I noticed that they were taken down fairly quickly. - Cherlene

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