Consultants working on pier project

File photo

Consultants are working on concepts for the end of the Seal Beach Pier.

District One Councilman/Mayor Joe Kalmick confirmed in a May 10 interview that he would meet with the consultants in the near future find out where the consultants are at as far as the project is concerned. The pier is in his district.

He said consultants had developed three concepts for the end of the pier.

Prior to the Monday, May 9, council meeting, District Four Councilwoman Schelly Sustarsic asked about a similar report in another newspaper.

An unsigned staff reply to Sustarsic’s question was made available to the public at Monday night’s meeting. (The document dealt two additional subjects.) “As reported at the October 25, 2021 City Council meeting in the ‘Report of City Manager and Department Heads Authorized Contracts,’ a scope of services was signed on September 8, 2021 by the City Manager with Time Real Estate & Team Design in the amount of $30,000 for consulting for the pier,” according to the staff reply.

Attached to the reply was an Aug. 23., 2021, letter from TEAM Real Estate & TEAM Design that was addressed to City Manager Jill Ingram. The letter was signed by broker Keith Bohr of TEAM Real Estate and Jeff Bergsma, architect and general contractor with TEAM Design & Construction.

The letter the scope of services being offered:

• Prepare a base plan, which would illustrate “the possible allowable building envelope

• Prepare a conceptual design and economic plans.

• Conduct a public townhall

“The goal of preparing the above conceptual plans would be to utilize them to generate public discussion and general outlook,” according to the Bohr/Bergsma letter.

“We suggest holding one or more public forums to share the conceptual vision and to have a dialogue with the community attendees on what they do and do not want like about each concept,” according to the Bohr/Bergsma letter.

“Of course,  there will be those that do not want to do anything ever and we would politely note their input, but our main focus would be to coax ‘constructive’ input on both design & function issues and desired uses,” they wrote.

“The kind of food and drink offerings? For example: pizza by the slice, sandwiches, burger & fries, fish, etc.? Should alcohol be allowed? If so, just beer & wine? Live music?” they wrote.

(Kalmick on May 10 said, “We’re not going to ignore the people that don’t want anything out there.”)

• City Council presentation of viable concepts.

On May 9 after the council meeting, Kalmick told the Sun that city consultants were working on concepts that would be presented at a public workshop.

Kalmick confirmed that the workshop/townhall would be similar to the swimming pool project workshops that were held in early 2020. (At that meeting, the public was offered a choice of a 50-meter pool, a 40-meter pool, or no swimming pool at all.)

On May 10, Kalmick said he wants to talk to the consultants about what city officials and residents would like to see

Kalmick said he would be meeting with the pier consultants. He said he was doing this to continue the dialogue with the consultants.

“This at least puts us back to moving forward,” Kalmick said.

“These guys have grown up around here,” Kalmick said, apparently referring to Bohr and Bergsma.

According to Kalmick, city staff is currently “buried” by the problem of making state-mandated revisions to the Housing Element of the Seal Beach General Plan.

Kalmick said there have been internal discussions among city staff about what the city would like to see.

He said the city has seen three distinct choices for the end of the pier. That’s in addition to the idea of having nothing-at-all at the end of the pier.

A recent (and unscientific) poll found that 58.83% of participants preferred food trucks or a restaurant at the end of the pier. Another 38.46% preferred to have nothing at the end of the pier.

The four participants in the April 28 “Sidewalk Talk” individual on the street interview feature all expressed a desire for a restaurant at the end of the pier.

Tell us what you’d like to see at the end of the pier: email