ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (FOX 13) - Crews still have a long way to go on until the new St. Petersburg Pier is complete, but they’ve come a long way. The concrete pier deck is now complete, which was a nine-month project by itself.
“This is the front door to the city,” explained Chris Ballestra, the city's managing director of development. "All this concrete has just been poured within the last two and a half weeks, and so this is all brand new.”
One of St. Petersburg’s most visible construction sites, the $80-million pier project is slowly taking shape.
“I think we’ve still got throughout 2019 of hard construction left,” Ballestra said.
A late 2019 completition date has been pushed to 2020, but officials are less concerned with getting it done fast.
“We’re focused on, number one, getting it right. That’s all that matters," Ballestra said. "It’s not one project. The St. Pete Pier is at least 100 separate projects.”
Designers say the pier and pier approach were designed with people in mind, and citizens had a lot of say on the final layout.
“We looked at a lot of different things," Ballestra said. "We looked at an extraordinary amount of community input. Arguably, more so than any project in the city of St. Petersburg, relative to community input and we’ve arrived at the project we have right now.”
The new pier design includes subtle hints to the past, but won’t resemble the historic "Inverted Pyramid" much at all.
“We can do things in different areas that we really could’ve never done before on the old pier," Ballestra explained. "The design is amazing, and it’s timeless and it will take us into the future for many years to come.”