Observation Deck Design Endorsed By Chatham Selectmen

CHATHAM – Concerns about the observation deck at the Chatham Fish Pier are being addressed.

Selectmen approved a conceptual plan last month.

Director of Natural Resources Dr. Robert Duncanson said there were some major issues.

“We had concerns about the structural stability of it and its physical condition. Several years ago we had to limit the number of people that were allowed up on the deck at one time because of concerns expressed by the building commissioner that the deck could not support an unlimited number of people,” he said.

The $1.2 million deck will be self-supporting and funded by a mixture of sources.

Susan Nilson, a project engineer, points out that there are many priorities.

“A primary goal was to provide handicap access if at all possible. We’re also tasked with looking at expanding the public viewing opportunities, especially of the south jog, so people will be able to look out from the observation deck versus at ground level,” she said.

A key challenge will be using materials that can withstand high winds, storm surges, salt air and heavy traffic.

The pier is one of the town’s biggest attractions.

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