Good fishing, good people. It just doesn't get any better than this.The new Navarre Beach Pier opened on June 5, 2010 after five years of patience and hard work by Santa Rosa County citizens, staff and contractors. After hurricanes Ivan and Dennis destroyed the existing pier in 2004 and 2005, Santa Rosa contracted with PBS&J to begin working on this monumental project. County staff and PBS&J worked with the Federal Emergency Management Agency to demonstrate that the initial allocation of approximately $50,000 would not be sufficient to repair the pier. Extensive documentation to support the building of a new pier that was not only up-to-date with building codes and design standards, but storm-resistant was provided to FEMA and approved by the agency in late 2008 as an "improved project."
Public input was a vital component of the project. Feedback from locals provided insight into what our residents wanted to see in the new pier, from fishermen to those who simply would enjoy a stroll on the new pier. Many ideas were incorporated into the final design, including the octagon-shaped end and obstruction-free railing to prevent interference with fishing.
The permitting, final design work and construction bidding was completed in early 2009. On March 12, 2009 Santa Rosa County Commissioners voted to accept Ed Waters and Sons Contracting Company's bid for the construction of the new Navarre Beach Pier. PBS&J served as the construction manager. Construction began with the demolition of the old pier, from the dune landward, on April 20, 2009. The first piling was put in the ground on May 7, 2009 with the new pier built next to the previous pier.
Commissioners originally approved the design of a 1,500 feet pier. In late October 2009, Ed Waters and Sons Contracting Company approached county leaders with an idea- extend the pier by 45 feet, making it the longest pier in Florida and the Gulf of Mexico, and they would donate the labor, equipment, supervision and overhead. At the November 12 commission meeting, all five commissioners approved the extension plan. The project was completed on budget in only 12 months.
Navarre Beach Pier Features
- Concrete piles: 150- two foot square concrete piles totaling over 10,000 feet in length combined
- An octagonal end design with a surface area of approximately 3,800 square feet
- Deck: over 800 breakaway wood panels, which will detach during heavy wave action and help preserve integrity of the structure, reducing possible storm repair costs
- Seven potable water spigots
- Deck height- 30 feet above the water
- Surface: over 32,000 square feet of accessible surface
- Railing: more than 3,000 feet of handrail with no obstructions located above the railing which would interfere with fishing
- Attendant building with stair and handicap accessible ramp access to pier
- Over 90 low wattage lights and concrete bollards to protect sea turtle nesting
- Sixteen handicap accessible railing locations
Access to Pier
Wooden stairs and an ADA ramp are available. The pier deck also includes 16 handicap accessible railing locations.
Height of Deck
The deck height is located at 30 feet above the water. This height is the same as the Okaloosa County Fishing Pier and necessary in order to maintain the integrity of the structure during storm events with high waves.
Lights are integrated into one-foot thick concrete bollards spaced every 35 feet. The top of the concrete bollards are flush with the top of the railing. Only turtle friendly lights are used.
The rail height is located at three feet, six inches above the pier deck in order to comply with the Florida Building Code. The railing thickness is six inches. There are no obstructions located above the railing that would interfere with fishing. Two inch by two inch plastic coated wire mesh is stretched between the railing posts.
Pier Walkway Surface
The decking for the pier is wood. During high wave events, the wood panels can lift out and float away to relieve pressure on the pier. The wood panels are constructed of three inch by six inch pressure treated southern yellow pine structural grade 1. The panels are six feet long with a maximum width of 12 feet and a minimum width of six feet. The use of grade 1, not grade 2, wood will help with warping as will the weight of the panels.
Angle of Piles
In order to maintain the structural stability of the pier during storms, the pilings enter the sandy bottom at a 20 degree angle. This results in the outer piles extending out one foot for every five feet of drop from the decking. The outer pilings extend out six feet from the pier at the water surface.
Protection of Wildlife
Signs are posted with safe fishing guidelines for the protection of sea turtles, birds and dolphins. In the event that a sea turtle, bird or dolphin is hooked or entangled in line, phone numbers to call are posted on the signs. The pier is located in a federally designated critical habitat for the Gulf Sturgeon. Signage is located on the pier educating fishermen about the Gulf Sturgeon. Discarding fish wastes, bait and monofilament line is prohibited. Monofilament recycling stations are located on the pier.