St. Petersburg hopes Pinellas County approves additional $14 million towards new pier

Posted at 4:27 AM, May 01, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-01 08:45:28-04

With Construction set to begin on the St. Pete pier in just a few weeks, the city is hoping Pinellas County will give an extra $14M to the project. 

The money was originally set aside for the Green Light Pinellas project - but because that failed, the city wants to see it go towards the pier but if the county doesn't approve - it won't happen. 

Mayor Rick Kriseman says the money would be used for enhancing the plans already in place for the pier - for example - expanding the size and scope of the children's splash area, adding a covered pavilion that would include a restaurant and a place for people to sit and get out of the sun. It would also go towards improving the stretch of road that connect Beach Drive to the pier. If Pinellas County says no - the Mayor says the pier will go on as scheduled because he says it is fully funded and on budget for $50M. 

Some folks say they'd like to see the $14M spent on the sewer system but Mayor Kriesman says it can't be done because the money is bound to a certain area of the city. He says understands their concerns about the sewer system.

"It's something that's really been to some degree ignored over our history where we kept up but we haven't gotten ahead," said Mayor Kriseman. "We have to do those things to really get ahead of the curve and to really plan for the kind of rain we're going to experience going forward that years ago we didn't, but we are going to now."

He says they have committed to spending $304M dollars over the next 5 years on addressing the drainage issues.