Pier opening delays continue

Storms, mussels and more have delayed the full opening of the Malibu Pier-now predicted for summer 2006. However, pier operators say fishing operations could begin in the next month and Mo’s is now open during weekends.

By Jonathan Friedman/ Assistant Editor

Malibu Pier Partners LLC, which was selected by the state to operate the pier, is expected to officially take over the operation from the California Department of Parks and Recreation this week if all goes well with an inspection of a recently installed elevator, which was required by the Americans With Disabilities Act.

Jefferson Wagner of Malibu Pier Partners said after the inspection, construction could begin on several projects for the pier.

Several incidents have delayed the progress of pier construction and the eventual opening of the full pier, including recent winter storms. January’s storms destroyed a large number of the pier’s pilings. Those pilings had to be replaced or repaired by State Parks. This came after mussels that attached themselves to the pilings had destroyed several other pilings. Wagner said these delays made his 2004 prediction of a spring 2005 full opening of the pier impossible. On Friday, he said the pier would be fully open by the summer of 2006.

After the elevator inspection, which a representative from State Parks said is likely to go well, construction can begin on a surfing museum and several small shops. Wagner said he also expects fishing operations at the ocean side of the pier to begin within the next three to four weeks.

Late last month, Mo’s restaurant reopened on the landside of the pier for weekend operation. Wagner said he hopes Mo’s will eventually move to a building at the oceanside of the pier. Construction of the interior for that building will most likely begin in a few months. Several state permits must still be acquired before that can happen.

Wagner said the building where Mo’s is currently located is supposed to be an extension of an adjacent building that formally housed Alice’s Restaurant. Construction of the interior of that building could begin within the next 60 days. Further state approval must be done for that building, and Wagner said he expects that to happen within the 60-day time frame. A vendor for that location has not been selected.

The Malibu Times is the first newspaper in Malibu, serving the community since 1946.

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