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Daily Pilot

Council leans toward pier eatery

Members had considered tearing down the vacant structure, but during a study session, it was noted that Bluewater Grill has already expressed interest.

By Emily Foxhall

10:30 PM PST, January 28, 2014

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Newport Beach will put out a request for proposals from restaurants interested in occupying the empty building at the end of Newport Pier, which housed a seafood restaurant from 1993 until 2012, when its lease expired.

Council members had considered seeking clearance from the Coastal Commission to remove the building and convert it into a flexible-use space that could host anything from food trucks to a tai chi class to music performances. Instead, during a study session Tuesday they decided that bringing a new restaurant to the space provided a tempting option — especially since Bluewater Grill had already expressed interest, city staff said during a study session that preceded the meeting.

"Part of me would like to do something different," Gardner said.

The proposal process will help the city determine how much Newport Beach and the restaurant would each contribute toward the $300,00 to $400,000 needed to renovate the existing structure.

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LANDSCAPE CONTRACT

The council on Tuesday also approved

a five-year contract with landscape construction and management firm Park West to maintain the grounds at the Civic Center and Park and at the library.

Park West, which completed the grounds and park last year, has since maintained the "plants, trees and turf," according to a staff report.

Under the new proposal, Park West will continue such services beyond the original date of April 2014. It will also take over additional work such as maintaining the walkways and dog park, tasks currently being done by city staff.

"I think they have a unique ability to manage that," City Manager Dave Kiff said.

The contract is not to exceed a cost of $186,782 annually.

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NEW PAVEMENT

Two stretches of road built in the 1920's in Corona del Mar will be repaved.

Council members unanimously approved a $176,300 contract with Anaheim-based Onward Engineering to repave Ocean Boulevard between Marguerite and Goldenrod avenues, as well as Marguerite Avenue between Ocean Boulevard and East Coast Highway.

Deteriorated sidewalks, curbs, gutters and curb access ramps will also be reconstructed, according to the staff report.

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FAKE TREE

A 62-foot-tall fake eucalyptus tree will be planted at Harbor Christian Church, 2401 Irvine Ave, to house equipment for four telecommunications carriers, beginning with Verizon Wireless.

The council considered the proposal during two sessions last year. On Feb. 12, council members determined its height and directed the applicant, a Newport Beach-based telecommunications infrastructure company called Mobilitie, to utilize a landscape architect.

The project was approved March 26 under the condition that final plans be approved.

The council OKd those plans Tuesday, with members Nancy Gardner and Tony Petros recording no votes.