A Santa Monica pier restoration plan that will cost far less than previous proposals has been approved by the City Council, allowing officials to begin rebuilding the landmark that was damaged badly by storms two years ago.
The plan, which won unanimous approval, puts the reconstruction cost at $13 million. The money would go for rebuilding and extending the pier's 900-foot breakwater and fortifying damaged sections.
Gail Markens, director of the Pier Restoration Corp., told the council that the plan represents the best solution for the money, saying, "We've finally identified an alternative that represents a decrease of about $4 million from the original design alternatives."
Reconstruction is part of a long-range plan to upgrade entertainment and other activities on the dilapidated pier. Councilman Ken Edwards said he was glad to see the plan approved after long delays and that he was pleased with the design. "We can use a combination of concrete and wood pilings," Edwards said, "concrete where it is least expensive and wood where we want to maintain the visual integrity of the pier."