The county will begin work over the next few weeks on two major improvement projects with a combined price tag of nearly $ 1.4 million.
Repair work on sections of the pier at McNears Beach Park is expected to cost $ 990,000, and replacement of the irrigation system at Lagoon Park, adjacent to the Civic Center and County Fairgrounds, is expected to cost $ 400,000.
Max Korten, acting director of Marin County Parks, said the jetty project would be funded with Measure A funds.
“This really fits the goal of Measure A, which takes care of the park facilities that we have,” Korten said. “There is a lot of deferred maintenance on the pier. “
Korten compared the plans to a homeowner replacing the foundation of a house.
“It’s not the most exciting job,” Korten said. “But it’s essential to make sure you still have a home in case there is an earthquake.”
The pier, which stretches into San Pablo Bay, was badly damaged in 2008 when a 270-foot barge broke off in a storm and crashed there. The insurance money then paid for the repairs.
“We took this opportunity to examine the rest of the pier which was not affected by the crash,” Korten said.
County workers found that under the pier, the concrete beams supporting it were starting to crack and in some places the concrete was shattering, exposing rusty rebar.
Senior park planner Steve Petterle said to repair the pier, rust will need to be removed from the rebar and the concrete repaired or wrapped in concrete fabric.
“It’s kind of like filling a tooth,” Petterle said. “You must get rid of the cavity before you fill it.”
The pier is on state land as it stretches across the bay and the county operates it in accordance with state regulations. Korten said the county’s operating agreement with the state requires him to keep the pier open to the public even during repairs.
“This can be an extended project,” Petterle said. “It can last six months. “
Indeed, the work will be limited to times when the tides provide workers with the access they need under the pier, he said.
In contrast, replacing the irrigation system at Lagoon Park is only expected to take two months.
“We only had two break sections during the fair,” Korten said. “It’s a mess when this happens, and it wastes water, so it’s important that we fix these things.”
Petterle said the breaks during the Marin County Fair could have been caused by carnival workers driving tent poles or driving heavy tractor-trailer trucks across the lawn at the fairgrounds. The project involves the replacement of a main pipeline, an asbestos pipe nearly 50 years old.
Petterle said the pipe is not delivering water to the lagoon. He speculates that it can be powered by a spring.
“Nobody really knows how it fills up,” Petterle said. “But it remains at a fairly constant level.”
Also in August, design work is expected to begin on a destination playground for McInnis Park in San Rafael. Master plans for the improvement of McNears Beach Park and Stafford Lake Park are expected to go to the Marin County Oversight Board soon, Korten said. A preliminary plan for McNears Beach unveiled over a year ago called for a larger pool, changing rooms and new concession buildings. It was estimated at $ 45 million.