this week was fun as we were informed and reminded of the history of The Santa Monica Pier by Jim Harris, Executive Director of The Santa Monica Pier Corporation. The Pier has many phases to its history.
Santa Monica Pier first opened to the public on September 9, 1909. It took sixteen months to construct the 1,600-foot-long concrete pier, which was then called the Santa Monica Municipal Pier. It was the first concrete pier on the West coast at this time. The Yacht Harbor period saw many boats in the harbor, including Charlie Chaplin’s yacht.
In the early 1970’s the Santa Monica City Council ordered the demolition of the pier. In response to that decision, Santa Monica residents joined together to fight for the survival of the Pier. They developed a “Save Our Pier Forever” campaign, which resulted in the City creating the Pier Restoration Corporation to provide Pier management and oversee restoration efforts. In 1975 the Hippodrome building, and carousel were designated a U.S. National Historic Landmark.
The Santa Monica Pier celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2009 and Pacific Park recognized its 20-year mark in 2016, together they now welcome millions of visitors to enjoy the incredible views of the Pacific Ocean, Santa Monica coastline, Catalina Island, Malibu, and Palos Verdes Peninsula.