Damage to the White Rock Pier and Promenade caused by the Dec. 20 storm may be quicker and less costly to repair than first thought, council learned at its Monday night meeting. (File photo)

Damage to the White Rock Pier and Promenade caused by the Dec. 20 storm may be quicker and less costly to repair than first thought, council learned at its Monday night meeting. (File photo)

Pier, promenade repairs may be quicker, less costly than feared

White Rock weighs timelines, rebuilding options

An update on pier and shoreline repair work given to White Rock council by city engineer Jim Gordon and financial services director Sandra Kurylo Monday night seemed to offer a ray of hope that work can proceed faster – and less expensively – than previously anticipated.

While Gordon said it would take an estimated $6 million to refurbish the entire pier, he added he believes repairing the largest gap in the structure could be achieved “for about half of that.”

Kurylo told council the pier is insured for just under $7 million.

She said, however, the city is still in detailed discussions with its insurance company about how much funding for work that needs to be done on the structure can come out of the insurance money.

“The purpose of insurance is to bring the asset back to the condition it was in before the incident,” she noted.

Kurylo said a detailed status report on the damage will be provided at the next regular council meeting (Jan. 28) and amendments to the city financial plan, revised cost estimates and recommended funding sources would be ready for council consideration on Feb. 11.

Gordon also said that, since clean-up work is moving faster than anticipated, “we’re believing now that we can open the promenade west of the white rock by Feb. 8.”

Repairs to the East Beach promenade will still likely take until the end of April, he said.

Gordon said that, while pier repairs are governed by a window set by Fisheries and Oceans Canada – which says that work can’t be done in the water or on the beach after Feb. 28 – the city is going to apply for an amendment, “although that is by no means guaranteed.”

Because of that window, he said, the city will concentrate this year on fixing the two main breaches to the pier caused by the Dec. 20 windstorm; the large clearly-visible gap and another further to the south, with work expected to be complete by August.