The Cayucos Pier restoration project is finished, more than two years after county officials closed the pier because of safety concerns. The repairs were finished just in time to face what forecasters are saying is likely to be an active storm season triggered by a strong El Niño weather system.
The community is coming together in two events to celebrate the pier accomplishment.
A ribbon-cutting event will celebrate the $3.5 million renovation at noon Saturday, Oct. 31.
Hawaiian slack-key guitarist Makana will provide music. Pier tours will highlight the newly stabilized and rebuilt pier and its plaques commemorating the project spearheaded by the community and accomplished by the county and its contractors.
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The night before, at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 30, the Cayucos Historical Society will present its “celebrating the restoration of our historic pier” event, a free gathering with refreshments and an opportunity to get answers to any remaining questions about the pier.
County officials closed the pier in July 2013 after discovering severely deteriorated piles and cross-bracing that could have caused the pier to collapse in a powerful winter storm. Divers later discovered that creosote-treated pilings had rotted from the inside.
Donations to the community-led Cayucos Pier Project Committee contributed $235,000 to the project, some of which went toward a new electrical system and lighting.
According to www.savecayucospier.org, the committee has an additional $270,000 in a restricted pier trust fund, to be used to “encourage the county to do regular professional inspections and maintenance on into the distant future.” The committee is still accepting donations toward those aims, because members intend that the fund will continue in perpetuity.
The website reports that Capt. James Cass built the pier in 1872. In 1876, the pier was rebuilt and lengthened to cover a distance of 982 feet.