While much of the damage from Hurricane Sally in 2020 has been repaired, areas along the waterfront in Orange Beach are still waiting.

“It’d be nice if you could walk down that way and fish since everyone’s kind of stuck right here in this two-hundred-foot region,” said Tyler Stewart of the Park at Perdido Pass.

Stewart has been coming to Orange Beach with his family from Tennessee for 15 years and likes fishing at Perdido Pass. He and others will be glad to know that proposals were due Tuesday, October 12, 2021 for the hiring of the engineering firm who will map out the repairs.

Overlooking a calmer Wolf Bay is another favorite spot to visit. Orange Beach Waterfront Park is nestled against the bay, next to the Coastal Arts Center of Orange Beach.

“This is the second time here and we really like this park here because it’s so peaceful and everything,” said Jerry Nash.

Nash and his wife live in St. Louis but love visiting Orange Beach. Last year, Nash took a picture of his wife sitting on the pier and had hoped to get a picture of her again this year with their six-month-old son but found the pier barricaded off.

“All the roofs are fixed and pretty much, all the houses are fixed and everything, but the pier is still in that shape right there,” Nash said, pointing over his shoulder at a storm-battered pier.

Since the city acquired the property off Canal Road, the park has been a big attraction. The pier has been through numerous storms, but Hurricane Sally took a toll on it. Along with the Park at Perdido Pass, the pier hasn’t been a top priority to get repaired, but its turn is coming.

“The bids should be going out in about a month and that hinges on the time when we get the actual Corps permit, so the city’s applied for the Corps permit months ago and we should be within about thirty days of receiving that permit,” said Orange Beach City Administrator, Ken Grimes.

The city is already in the process of reviewing plans submitted for a rebuild. Before moving forward, city officials said there are specific guidelines that must be followed.

“Part of the delays are that we had to go back and do a full engineering of the pier because of the construction and a few things have changed but it’s FEMA eligible and so, to make sure that we are able to get the FEMA dollars for the cost of the pier, we needed to make sure that everything was done to their standards and part of that is some of the engineering that they wanted,” explained Grimes.

The hope is that the project will be ready to go out for bid in the next month or so. If things go smoothly, there could be a new pier as early as sometime in the summer of 2022.

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