.Santa Cruz Wharf Reopens After Storm

City officials are assessing damage, preparing for weekend storm

The Santa Cruz Wharf reopened this morning, according to an update posted on the City of Santa Cruz and the Santa Cruz Wharf Instagram pages.

“All inspections are complete and the Wharf is now open to the public. The end of the Wharf had restricted access due to the damage. Follow all signage and stay out of restricted spaces,” read the post.

This comes a day after the wharf was closed to the public, as large waves pummeled the walkways and damaged pilings below, causing a fire sprinkler loop to rupture. 

According to the Instagram updates, the end of the wharf sustained significant damage. The Dolphin restaurant, which is the business located at the southernmost edge, was also damaged by the storm. Additionally, a restroom was damaged, as well as the sea lion viewing holes. Access to the area will be closed to the public until further notice, according to the post.

Photos shared by the city show broken railings at the water’s edge and a sinking walkway.

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The Dolphin Restaurant’s owner Mark Gilbert said that the damage is still being assessed by the city’s Public Works personnel, and that he has not been able to get out to the restaurant. However, from what he has seen in photos of the area, he thinks the future looks grim for the establishment.

“They’re assessing it, but if you look at it, the piling that holds up the beam, that holds up the floor and the walkway alongside The Dolphin are gone. It’s probably going to get torn down,” Gilbert said.

While there is a break in the weather, businesses and city officials are scrambling to address the damage and plan for the next round of rain that is coming this way on Saturday. Santa Cruz City communications manager Erika Smart said that personnel from various city departments are working throughout the day to plan a response.

“Our teams are meeting today to prepare and will have better information on what the community can expect later,” Smart said.

This story will be updated.

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