Pier Scheveningen Closes On Friday
On Friday the Pier in Scheveningen will close. The municipality of The Hague has ordered the closing of the Pier due to fire safety. Curator Marc Udink has tried to fight the decision of the municipality before court, but the court agreed to The Hague.
The curator was given time till October 1, to do necessary repairs. Last week, however, after inspection the safety department decided to close the Pier because the repairs had not been done.
In a response the curator told them that he didn’t have the money for the repairs. He proposed the municipality to pay the money for the repairs which they could have back from the money of the sales of the Pier. “The municipality refused that. So, it is their responsibility.”
Tired of fighting
On Thursday the shops on the Pier were opened for the last time. Owner of the pancake restaurant, Aad Rog, said on Thursday that the is devastated by the closure. “Tonight we will clean up one more time and that’s it. The goodbye party we already had last weekend. The whole pier was full with people and I even saw people shedding a tear.”
Aad Rog says that he has to pay his employees till December 31. “But I have no income during the coming period so I don’t know how long I can keep up with that.”
The curator has hope for the future. “De Pier will keep on existing. Within two years it will be sold. I am talking already with interested parties.”
The municipality says that the closure is not final. If the fire safety, by for instance a new owner, will be improved, the shopping area can be opened again.
In 1901 the oldest form of the Pier was opened by Prins Hendrik, the husband of the later queen Wilhelmina. This was a wooden construction. Guests of the hotel the Kurhaus could walk from the terrace of the hotel, via a bridge, 380 meters ‘into’ the sea.
After a fire, a stone version was built and opened in 1961 by prince Bernhard. The structure went through many changes and became a famous landmark of Scheveningen.
Hotel concern Van Der Valk bought the Pier in 1991. They invested a lot of money and even built a casino. Despite considerable investments by Van der Valk up to 2001, the Pier came into decline since 2001. A fire in 2011 made Van Der Valk decide to sell the Pier. January 15, 2013 bankruptcy was filed for the Pier.