One of Brisbane’s most loved and historically significant landmarks, the Shorncliffe Pier is taking shape on the Bayside shoreline as it is rebuilt by Council.
Recently I visited Shorncliffe to inspect progress on the Pier and was pleased to see that it is on track for an early 2016 opening to the community.
The original Shorncliffe Pier was built from timber and over its life was significantly affected by marine borers, with a number of the pier’s piles, headstocks and girders making the Pier structurally unstable.
This is a great landmark for our city, and I wanted to see it live on for many more years, so in 2012 I announced a $20 million renewal of the Pier.
Since works started last year, the Pier has been completely dismantled and it is now being gradually rebuilt.
92 piles have now been placed, along with 23 of 40 six-tonne headstocks and 80 of 168 concrete girders. Also, more than 1500 linear metres of timber decking for the Pier has already been laid in the rebuild.
While the new foundations are made from concrete, the pier will retain the heritage look and feel of the original structure with timber joints, decking, handrails and rotunda.
The Pier was built by the Sandgate Pier Company in 1882 and formerly known as the Sandgate Pier; the structure was Brisbane’s largest timber pier and was a significant example of nineteenth century architecture.
It featured segregated ladies and men’s swimming baths at the shore end and was used as a stop for steam passenger ferries to Woody Point and Bramble Bay. It was also built to support the newly completed Brisbane-Sandgate railway line.
In 1884 the 259 metre long pier was extended by 91 metres to allow additional depth for larger steam passenger ferries to Woody Point, before ferry services from the pier ceased in 1928.
For many years the Pier has been the starting point for the Brisbane to Gladstone yacht race, held on Good Friday and I’m pleased to announce that it will be finished in time for the 2016 race.
Renewing the Shorncliffe Pier will ensure its rich legacy endures for generations to come, with the inclusion of timber elements from the original structure paying homage to its history and ensuring a similar look and feel.
For more information about the Shorncliffe Pier Renewal Project, visit www.brisbane.qld.gov.au.