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Date of Issue: July 29, 2005

Bradenton Beach pier plans presented

Architectural plans featuring a more boater-friendly Bradenton Beach City Pier have been presented to the city commission and will be the topic of discussion Thursday.

The restaurant at the pier at the east end of Bridge Street was closed Sept. 10, 2004, after Hurricane Frances damaged the structure. Later inspections determined that most of the building would have to be demolished due to safety concerns.

The plans, drafted by the architectural firm of O'Brien and Smith, call for rebuilding the restaurant and relocating the entrance to the south side of the facility. There would be 60 seats inside and 56 seats outside the restaurant.

Also on the south side of the pier, near the clock tower, plans call for a bait shop and a dockmaster's office.

But the big change is in the addition of docks along the breakwater south of the pier to link with another city-owned dock on the shore just to the south of the pier. Plans also call for a special dedicated docking area for the oft-discussed water taxi that Manatee County officials have been discussing for more than a year.

O'Brien and Smith estimate the total cost of the project at about $516,000, with $367,000 for the restaurant reconstruction and $148,000 for new docks and the two added buildings.

The city commission work session on the pier is scheduled to start at 2 p.m. July 28.