Waveland Pier months away from reopening

The Waveland Municipal Pier was damaged last year by Hurricane Isaac.
The Waveland Municipal Pier was damaged last year by Hurricane Isaac.

WAVELAND, MS (WLOX) - One of the coast's longest and most popular fishing piers remains out of commission. WLOX News has received several e-mails from people wanting to know what's the hold-up on re-construction work at the Waveland Municipal Pier. The pier was damaged last year by Hurricane Isaac.

The bid process is now underway. But if you were hoping to cast a line from the pier anytime soon, you might be disappointed.

Toby Eichman is from Graytown, Ohio. He and his family are vacationing in Biloxi. He says when he heard about Waveland's lengthy pier, he drove over to take a look.

"We obviously can't do that," said Eichman.

The family was greeted by keep out and closed signs, and the mess Isaac left behind.

"It would have been nice to take a stroll out there, at least. Walk on the pier to check out the ocean view from there," explained a disappointed Eichman.

City leaders had hoped the re-construction work would have been finished by now, but a drastic disparity between the initial damage estimates and the final one held up the project.

FEMA's estimate said there was $800,000 worth of damage on the pier. But city engineers said there was $1.8 million worth.

"So we had to go back to FEMA and make sure they were in agreement," said Engineer Jeff Clemens.

He said the good news is the project recently went out for bids. The bad news is it will be months before the pier is usable again.

"We're all hoping for next summer. Now another summer has slipped passed us, nothing anybody could really do about it. Sadly, it just takes time."

Contractors bids on the project will be accepted September 11. If all goes well with the bids, officials say the work will begin before the end of the year.

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