After discovery of need for more extensive rehabilitation, ‘Tony’ Saprito Fishing Pier project to take longer than city leaders originally anticipated

New shade structures, benches and art among facets of planned improvements

The Saprito Pier is located at Hart’s Landing in Sarasota. This rendering shows some of the planned improvements. Image courtesy City of Sarasota

“The popular T.J. ‘Tony’ Saprito Fishing Pier remains closed to the public while work continues on an improvement project that will make it even more visitor friendly and accessible for all,” Sarasota Mayor Hagen Brody noted in his Jan. 29 newsletter.

The additions of new shade structures, six new benches, “sea-life inspired art” and Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant railings and decking material are the major components of the project, Brody continued.

However, “Once the rehabilitation work began on the 1979-built pier,” Brody added, “the contractor discovered some serious concrete deterioration that was not readily visible [at the outset]. The City Commission recently approved a change order and extended the contract through December 2021 due to the extensive, additional repairs now necessary, although the project team expects to have the work completed sooner to reopen this treasured community asset,” Brody wrote.

“We look forward to seeing the new and improved pier being enjoyed by anglers, outdoor enthusiasts and anyone seeking an amazing view of our Sarasota sunsets,” he continued. “In the meantime, the adjacent Ernest ‘Doc’ and Eloise Werlin Park and the Doc Werlin’s Place at Hart’s Landing bait, tackle and snack shop will remain open,” Brody pointed out.