The $25 million, state-funded, job-creating Jennette’s Pier project in Nags Head has sustained a Nor ‘easter and a broken wind turbine. That said, recently hired Pier Manager Mike Remige says the project’s timeline is on schedule to open May 21, 2011. The pier’s operating budget alone, Remige mentioned, will cost $578,000 a year, and he followed that up by saying he believes he needs to soon hire four more employees, which is NOT included in the $578,000.
The pier’s budget is to be paid for by Aquarium receipts, and event and fishing fees. Or simply put, increased taxes that have yet to be passed, specifically in Nags Head, Dare County and in the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources budgets.
Because of the anticipated popularity of the pier, construction of piers in Carolina Beach and Emerald Isle are being encouraged to move forward. Described by a pier advisory board member, people in the area allegedly believe Jennette’s Pier will be one of the “wonders of the state of North Carolina.” Previously reported, the pier, and pier house, will be a boon to the area, bringing with it a rush of brides and grooms. Currently, there are six weddings booked after its completion – I hope they’ll be teaching basic math in the pier house classrooms next to the ballroom. Six weddings, aquarium receipts and fees will pay for the more than half-million dollar operating budget??
Another rush to the new Jennette’s Pier will be the scientific community. The vetting process to determine who will be allowed to conduct research on the pier and in its classrooms will be done by Remige, the Jennette’s Pier advisory board and his staff. Remige, who has spent the past two years as a research technician at the University of North Carolina Coastal Studies Institute in Nags Head, will surely not run out of options as to who can and cannot conduct research on the pier. Remige was also the manager of the former Jennette’s Pier before it was destroyed by Hurricane Isabel in 2003.
And certainly, now that there is a $25 million, state-funded, job creating pier in Nags Head – which was built during a recession when the state’s maintained double-digit unemployment for months – to conduct unprecedented, unheard of research on this pier that was never able to be conducted prior to it being built, like on a boat or in a real classroom, the world will now be a better place.
To marvel at the 16,000 square-foot pier house and to count the overwhelming number of construction workers at work, watch the video.