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Santa Monica Pier Begins 'Phased Reopening'

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By Lookout Staff

June 25, 2020 -- More than three months after shutting down during the coronavirus emergency, the Santa Monica Pier began a phased reopening Wednesday that requires visitors to wear face masks and maintain social distancing.

The Pier will be open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. "with limited and monitored access points to ensure capacity allows for proper physical distancing and safety," City officials said.

To limit the number of visitors, guests must enter through a queue line on Ocean Front Walk at the beach level and exit at the same entry point, officials said.

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“We know that the community has long awaited the reopening of our beloved Santa Monica Pier," Interim City Manager Lane Dilg said in a statement.

"This slow, phased reopening is structured to ensure the health and safety of all who visit,” Dilg said. “We look forward to businesses reopening on the Pier and are committed to do all we can to support their efforts.”

The Parking Deck, 1550 Lot (1 North) and other Pier-adjacent lots will remain closed to vehicles until further notice, City officials said. Nearby parking at Beach Lot-4 South and in downtown are available.

During the initial reopening phase, Pier restaurants and businesses, including Pacific Park and the historic Carousel will remain closed.

"In the coming weeks, to allow for increased physical distancing, additional and expanded outdoor space will be available for those who want to enjoy to-go options from open Pier restaurants," officials said.

New guidelines for dining and amusement on the Pier will be implemented once the City moves into the next phase of Pier reopening, officials said.

The Pier's reopening "aligns with State and County guidelines to ensure the health and safety of all who visit the Pier."

These include cleaning and disinfecting public areas and surfaces more frequently, focusing on high-touch areas. Guests should also use hand washing stations regularly, officials said.

The cleaning and safety measures will apply indefinitely until further notice, they said.

"Given the fluidity and nature of the situation, Santa Monica Pier is prepared to modify procedures as necessary," City officials said.

The Pier was temporarily closed at 6 a.m. March 16 after the City issued an emergency proclamation one day after declaring a local emergency ("Santa Monica Closes Pier, City Hall," March 16, 2020).

One week later, the City issued a supplemental emergency order imposing fines on those who visited the pier -- a popular destination that drew some 10 million visitors last year.

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