The Cosco Busan Oil Spill, in which a 900-foot cargo ship sideswiped a Bay Bridge tower in Nov. 2007 and dumped more than 58,000 gallons of bunker fuel into the bay, wrought devastation and led to the closure of destinations from Rodeo Beach to Angel Island.
But five years later, the legal and financial aftermath of that incident has yielded some positive results for Mill Valley in the form of a $26,500 grant to restore the Bayfront Park Recreational Bay Access Pier, which was badly damaged in the heavy winter storms of 2005.
As part of one of two settlements made by Cosco Busan after the spill, $2 million went to the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to be used for environmental projects in the Bay Area. In 2012, the foundation sought proposals for recreational projects that compensate the public for the loss of use and enjoyment of public beaches, parks, and other public or natural resources as a result of the Cosco Busan oil spill.
The foundation allocated approximately $6.8 million throughout the Bay Area, $720,000 of which went to Marin projects.
Rick Misuraca, the city of Mill Valley's soon-to-retire operations superintendent, worked with the Parks and Recreation Commission and some local volunteers to apply for funding.
City officials say the pier was built in the 1970s and included a fixed pier connecting to the park’s trail system, a gangway that adapted to tidal changes, and a floating pier providing direct access to the water. The pier was used for a variety of water-related activities including boating, fishing, and other recreational uses.
The project will restore use of the pier for boating, fishing, and other recreational uses.
As has been done on projects all over the city, staff will reconstruct the pier with redwood lumber salvaged and milled by Misuraca from downed trees in the city. The new pier (see sketch above), will feature a new aluminum gangway which will connect the floating pier to the fixed pier and meet accessibility guidelines, according to city officials.
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