City Beat

Abandoned riverfront pier in West Sacramento now spiffed up and open to the public

Even on a stormy afternoon, a newly rehabilitated pier on the West Sacramento riverfront provides a new view of the city’s big plans.

Mill Street Pier, extending 120 feet into the Sacramento River, is now open to the public following an intense rehab project. The pier sits close to The Barn entertainment venue and along a developing riverfront recreation area in West Sacramento’s Bridge District, the future home of thousands of residents.

While the pier is open, the city is still planning to install lighting and furniture on the structure in the coming weeks.

The pier won’t accommodate swimmers or boats. But West Sacramento Mayor Christopher Cabaldon described it as “an extension of the river walk” that the city is creating along its undeveloped side of the Sacramento River.

“It’s a way to get out over the river and reflect and appreciate and see the river,” he said.

The pier provides views of the downtown Sacramento skyline and the Sacramento River, from the Tower Bridge to the Pioneer Bridge. Cabaldon said the city hopes to add more access points to the river in the years ahead, including a boat dock just north of the Tower Bridge. Public art installations are slated to be installed along the river walk as well.

Once used as a loading dock for a rice mill, the pier had fallen into disrepair. The city began the process of rehabbing the structure in 2015, using state parks and affordable housing grants, as well as fees paid by the developers of the Bridge District.

There is still money available in the project’s $1 million budget to begin the design phase of an interpretive and interactive nature installation on the pier. The City Council is expected to approve an agreement at its Wednesday meeting with artist Janet Zweig “to partner with local scientists and develop an interpretive element that is of the pier and adjacent pilings, interacts with and educates about environmental conditions such as water levels, includes educational signage and aesthetically enhances the pier,” according to a city staff report.

Ryan Lillis: 916-321-1085, @Ryan_Lillis

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