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Federal funding secured, planning phase begins for renovation of Morro Bay pier

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Posted at 5:43 PM, May 03, 2023

The City of Morro Bay and the Morro Bay Harbor Department will begin the planning phase for renovations of the northern T-Pier, officials told KSBY Wednesday, now that federal funding has been secured.

The T-Pier renovations, which include replacing over 50 of the pier’s structural pilings, adding new decking, and improvements to the safety systems, among other things, will be funded using $1.5 million that was provided by the federal government through the 2022 omnibus spending bill.

The $1.5 million is about half of the projected funding required for needed renovations.

“This pier was built in the ‘40s, so there’s a significant amount of repairs that need to be done to the pilings, the braces,” Ted Schiafone, the director of the Morro Bay Harbor, told KSBY. “It supports the Coast Guard, it supports the Harbor Patrol. So, we need to make certain that this dock is secure.”

The pier is used for commercial and recreational fishing, as well.

Schiafone and Mayor of Morro Bay Carla Wixom said planning, and the renovations themselves, on the North T-Pier will be broken down into phases. That planning will be done now while they attempt to secure additional funding through other grant-program opportunities.

Rep. Salud Carbajal (CA-24), who applied for and secured the funding, met with the Mayor Wixom and Director Schiafone on Wednesday to celebrate the plans.

“[The pier plays] such an important role in this community,” Carbajal said, who is a senior member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. “I’m extremely proud to have worked to secure the funding for this renovation.”

“And I’m just glad that the federal government could be a part of it.”

It’s one of 23 projects on the Central Coast that Carbajal has managed to secure funding for, Carbajal said, totaling over $40 million over the last two years.

Repairs on the South T-Pier, which received renovation funding through the city’s general fund, will be started, and likely completed, first.

Mayor Wixom said that the city applied for FEMA money to help with storm-related damages on other repairs.