System issues are causing delays at Surfside Beach pier as expected opening date nears

More issues have come up with the construction of the Surfside Beach pier, causing more delays and possibly pushing back its opening date, which is set for April.

Mayor Bob Hellyer announced that a security system will be installed for the pier during construction to save the town money. Initially, there were plans to add the system after construction was finished, but costs have skyrocketed since then.

The pier’s fire suppression system, which must be checked regularly, is also causing delays, according to a Facebook post. Hellyer didn’t disclose specifics about that problem.

These issues were first made public during Tuesday’s council meeting. Hellyer said the issues were just discovered earlier this week.

“It is unfortunate, but delays like these are problems that every construction project must deal with,” he said in the post.

It is not clear if these delays will push back the opening date, but Hellyer said he would keep residents updated on the pier’s progress.

Construction of the pier came to halt twice in October after two stop work orders were issued 10 days apart due to design conflicts and licensing oversights.

Both were lifted within a matter of days and didn’t affect the pier’s planned April opening.

Powerful winds from Hurricane Matthew in 2016 sheared off half of the pier’s 800-foot-long walkway and closed it indefinitely.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency awarded $15 million to the town in 2021 to pay for the pier’s repairs and upgrades, but the costs have climbed to roughly $20 million. To help make up the difference, the town added parking meters at all beaches and converted one-hour parking along Surfside Drive from Hollywood to Pinewood drives to paid.