Pier grows in scope, price

Tampa Bay Times - - Front Page - BY WAVENEY ANN MOORE Times Staff Writer

Nine years ago, the city of

St. Peters­burg chose to tear down the old in­verted pyra­mid on the bayfront and build at new pier for $50 mil­lion. As the new pier has risen, so has its cost. Work on the pro­ject is ex­pected to largely wrap up by the end of the year.

St. Peters­burg ’s plans for a $50 mil­lion pier have grown, along with the pro­ject’s price tag.

ST. PETERS­BURG — The year was 2010, when the City Coun­cil voted to de­mol­ish St. Peters­burg’s old in­verted pyra­mid Pier that was cost­ing tax­pay­ers about $1.4 mil­lion in an­nual sub­si­dies.

A new pier would be built and the bud­get was to be $50 mil­lion.

Nine years later, the “world class” pier of cur­rent Mayor Rick Krise­man’s dreams is un­der con­struc­tion, ris­ing in a down­town strum­ming with a youth­ful vibe.

The bud­get is now $80 mil­lion and the once 5½-acre pier will now be a 26-acre des­ti­na­tion boast­ing a $1 mil­lion chil­dren’s play­ground and in­ter­na­tion­ally renowned art paid for in part with at least $1.2 mil­lion in pri­vate fund­ing that will sup­ple­ment an es­ti­mated $1.3 mil­lion in pub­lic money to cre­ate its elab­o­rate in­fra­struc­ture.

Though not part of the of­fi­cial pier bud­get, mil­lions more are be­ing spent for an at­trac­tion that a mar­ket study es­ti­mates will have an an­nual $80

Pho­tos by SCOTT KEELER | Times

Con­struc­tion work con­tin­ues this month on what will be­come part of a slop­ing lawn at St. Peters­burg’s new pier.

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