Pier could be closed until summer

He has the permits in hand and is getting ready to collect bids for the repair work on the Harper Public Fishing Pier, but the director of marine facilities for the Port of Bremerton said there’s still the small matter of the “fish window.”

“You can’t work in the water from March 15 until June 14, so it’s likely that we will be precluded from starting (the repairs) until mid-June,” said Steve Slaton.

Used religiously by local fishermen, walkers and simply view-seekers, the pier has been closed because of safety concerns since Dec. 15, after an inspection revealed there were too many weakened pilings, or support beams, under the aged wooden structure.

After accepting a repair plan mapped out by engineering firm Petrovich, Nottingham and Drage (PND) to reinforce several of the deteriorated wooden pilings with steel beams to redistribute the weight of the pier, Slaton said he then had to acquire the proper permits from both the State Department of Fish and Wildlife and Kitsap County.

On Friday, Slaton said he had just received the go-ahead from the county, and after already having the work approved by the state, he said he would now be preparing bid packages for the repairs.

“Once the work begins, I’ve been told it should take less than two weeks from start to finish,” he said, explaining that if the work starts after the June 14 restriction, he expects the pier will re-open in July.

Once that work is under way, Slaton said his staff will begin investigating options for more permanent repairs.

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