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Ocean Beach Businesses Welcome News Of Pier Reopening

The Ocean Beach Pier is shown on May 7, 2021.
Guillermo Sevilla
The Ocean Beach Pier is shown on May 7, 2021.

“We’re very happy that we at least have something happening here.”

Denny Knox is in a much better mood these days than she was when we talked to her a few weeks ago. Then, the executive director of the Ocean Beach Mainstreet Association had just gotten word the Ocean Beach Pier, closed since January, would likely remain closed indefinitely.

Ocean Beach Businesses Welcome News Of Pier Reopening
Listen to this story by John Carroll.

A 364-page report on the pier’s condition said that it had reached "the end of its service life."


The report showed that the pier was in bad shape, and rebuilding it, or tearing it down and building a new one would cost upwards of $40-million.

But city engineers have since determined that repairs can be made to reopen most of it. Crews are now busy working on resurfacing portions and rebuilding railings.

Video: Ocean Beach Businesses Welcome News Of Pier Reopening

Knox said it’s a very good thing the pier will soon reopen.

“It’s vitally important to our economy here and even when it’s closed down because of damage like this, that really puts a crimp in things,” she said.

But as important as the pier is to businesses here, there is one business for which it is absolutely critical.


“Hallelujah!” was Chuck Fisher’s reaction when he learned the pier would reopen. Fisher owns the Walking on Water Cafe, which is out on the pier.

“It means so much to me and to my staff, to the community, and so… real good.”

But amidst all the good feelings, serious questions still loom. We asked Council President Jen Campbell about future plans. The pier is in her district. She wasn’t able to do an interview but responded to our questions via email.

Campbell said she will host a community forum soon with city engineers "and there will be a longer-term conversation about the options for the pier’s future.”

And as to how the city will pay to rebuild or repair it, Campbell said, “Funding for the future of the Pier could come from a number of funding sources - state federal or others - and we will be exploring all options to find the money necessary.”

But those are conversations for another day.

For now, there are a lot of smiles in Ocean Beach over the pier’s near future, and sighs of relief that it could very well reopen by Memorial Day.