Hutchinson Island deck collapse won’t impact Georgia Municipal Association convention

Published: Jun. 23, 2022 at 6:29 PM EDT
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CHATHAM COUNTY, Ga. (WTOC) - Work continues on fixing the deck collapse on Hutchinson Island.

According to Chatham County Manager Lee Smith, other than the damaged area being off limits to visitors going back and forth from the Convention Center and Westin or those getting on and off the ferries - it’s business as usual.

The ferries will continue to run, picking up and dropping off passengers at the dock just west of the Trade Center Landing.

There will also be a path between the Savannah Convention Center and Westin that will be available, just in time for this weekend’s Georgia Municipal Association convention.

“The parking garage that connects the Westin and Convention Center where a lot of the GMA folks will drive in from around the state is fully operational as well,” said Joe Marinelli, with Visit Savannah.

As far as the cause of the landing collapse, Smith says there were multiple contributing factors, but didn’t say what those could be just yet.

“I don’t want to give speculation. We want to get back the radar information. And then once we do...because you look for things like voids, materials, how things shifted. So, until we get that back, it’s pure speculation,” Smith said. Smith addressed some rumored potential factors, saying it wasn’t an impact from a boat. But on the earthquake that also happened the same morning as when the landing damaged was noticed.

“You can’t say it has or has not,” Smith said.

Smith did say it would be tough to determine if the earthquake in fact had any effect on the landing. Looking ahead to potential fixes and when those would happen, or how long it will take, Smith said that’s a moving target until survey results come back.

“Timelines, we don’t know. It depends on what we find. And the big thing is stabilization, and then looking at a long term fix,” Smith said.

Smith said at the moment, it appears the separation of the landing from its foundation has slowed, so they feel there likely won’t be any continued significant damage.

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