Structural damage forces closure of Cole Park Pier

Posted at 4:14 PM, May 01, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-01 17:14:14-04

Cole Park Pier is quiet.  The popular fishing spots’ entrance is blocked by boards.  The reason?

“Looked to be some cracks that went quite a way across the support structure,” said Parks and Recreation Director Jay Ellington.

According to Ellington, the pier, like most parks department facilities, is inspected quarterly.  But these cracks caught his department by surprise.

“We’ve seen some initial cracking in different places along the pier before,“ said Ellington.  “But nothing as severe as this.”

The city expects a complete analysis of the pier by the middle of next week.  Once the report is in, city officials can plan repairs.

“It’s a matter of trying to figure out if they’re severe and then determining the short term solution, as well as maybe a long term solution,” said Ellington.

But with the city facing a massive budget deficit, will there be enough money to make repairs?  Ellington says there are options.

“We generally have some emergency based funding we can use to get these things repaired if it is considered an emergency for us,” said Ellington.  “We have some community enrichment funds we use to reinvest in the park system.”

Ellington says he understands the people’s frustration, all he can do is ask for patience.

“We’ll try to get it back it up and in operation as soon as possible,” said Ellington.”