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Brighton Harbour maintenance dredging  

To ensure continued safe boating access within the harbour, a joint maintenance dredging operation between Parks Victoria and the Royal Brighton Yacht Club has begun and will run for about two to three weeks, subject to weather.   

Recognising the impacts of COVID-19 and extended closure of the Middle Brighton Pier for repairs, the Victorian Government is working with the Royal Brighton Yacht Club to support dredging of the access fairway, which lies partly outside the Club’s lease area, in preparation for the peak boating season. The Club is responsible for maintaining access to the marina entrance.

The dredging is needed as coastal processes have caused sand accretion of the Brighton Dog Beach (officially known as Sandown Street Beach), narrowing of the inner access channel fairway width from 30 to 15 metres and some impact to safe navigation for recreational boaters and emergency services.  Around 10,000m3 of sand is expected to be extracted from two dredge areas and transferred via pipeline to the disposal area north east of the harbour where it can re-enter the natural longshore process.  

Parks Victoria is working closely with the Royal Brighton Yacht Club to minimise impacts; however, mariners should expect access restrictions to the hardstand and pier (noting that repair works are still underway and access restrictions to the pier apply) during the dredging operation. Information about changes to access will be communicated via onsite signage and through Notice to Mariners. Owners of vessels located within the marina or hardstand should contact the Royal Brighton Yacht Club to discuss potential impacts and alternative access arrangements for this period.  

Frequently asked questions

Can I still use the dog beach?  
Yes, you can still access the sand spit, also known as the dog beach, unless otherwise marked onsite.  Sections along the western end of the dog beach will be closed to the public during the dredging works for safety reasons.  This area may remain closed for a short time after the works until the sand settles and stabilises.  All temporary beach closures will be clearly marked.  For safety reasons, visitors should keep their pets away from the closed areas, and prevent them getting close to any vessels or machinery operating in the area. 

Can I still swim in the harbour?    
The quality of water will not be affected during dredging, but it may appear turbid (cloudy) until the sand settles which may affect swimmer visibility.  For safety reasons, swimming within the harbour and near the deposit site is not recommended.  Swimmers should keep away from vessels or machinery operating in the area. 

Can I use the marina? 
The marina entry will remain open while dredging takes place along the access fairway.  Entry to the marina may be temporarily restricted when the dredger is working around and near the end of the breakwater. 

Can I use my boat in the harbour?

Parks Victoria is working with the Royal Brighton Yacht Club and dredging contractor to minimise impacts.  Mariners should expect temporary access restrictions during the works. Fairway access to the pier, inner low landing and hardstand (noting that pier repair works are still underway and access restrictions to the pier apply) may be restricted from time to time to enable works to be done as safely and as quickly as possible. Mariners must always proceed with caution around the dredge and be aware of floating or submerged pipelines.

Download the Brighton Harbour maintenance dredging frequently asked questions.


Middle Brighton Pier repairs

Project duration and key dates 

Partial pier closure – 25 May 2020 

Further structural testing - June 2020 

Engineering report to determine scope of work - late July 2020 

Scope of works determined - August 2020 

Works commence – January 2021       

       Stage 1 – January to April 2021  
      Stage 2 – July to December 2021 
Works complete – December 2021



Project partner 

Department of Transport; Part of the Victorian Government’s $2.7 billion Building Works package.   


Key information 

Middle Brighton Pier is being repaired as part of the Victorian Government’s Better Piers and Waterside Facilities investment across Port Phillip and Western Port. 

Middle Brighton Pier has had reduced public access since May 2020 due to risk of structural failure which posed public safety concerns. Engineering assessments revealed significant concerns for the structural capacity of the pier resulting in its closure to all vehicle and pedestrian access from the low landing to the marina entrance. A 150 metre section of the pier from the foreshore to the first low landing has remained open.  

Urgent remediation and strengthening works were completed in April 2021 to the underside of the 1977 section of pier between the foreshore and the marina entrance to repair the piles and crossheads.  

The next stage will see replacement of some concrete deck panels in the pier section between the foreshore and the marina arm (originally constructed in 1977).

The vital repairs that will restore public access to a 340 metre section of pier from the foreshore to the marina entrance is due for completion in summer. Access beyond the second low landing, including the breakwater and 1938 constructed section of pier, will not be permitted until further notice.  


Access to the pier during works

A complete pier closure is necessary during above-water peak construction times
. This will enable work to be done safely and as quickly as possible in the quieter winter months. The first and second low landings will also be closed during repairs unless otherwise advised. Where possible, a 150 metre section of pier from the foreshore up to the first low landing will be made safe and opened periodically (such as weekends) for public enjoyment. Please see onsite signage for further directions around periodic restricted access.  Parks Victoria will continue to work with Royal Brighton Yacht Club to minimise the impact of this closure where possible and assess alternative access for the duration of the closures.  There may be some visual amenity and noise impacts. Alternative nearby locations for pier walking, angling and recreational boating during the works can be enjoyed at St Kilda and Mordialloc Pier.  


Works update

Installation of the replacement concrete decks has begun.



Strengthening works to the underside of the pier are complete.



Frequently asked questions 

Why was the pier closed?
The two sections of pier closures were put in place for public safety and to allow urgent assessment and repairs to be carried out.  A detailed engineering assessment of the pier condition in July 2020 revealed significant concerns for the structural capacity of the concrete deck planks and the scope of repair work was developed.  The pier was built in two sections, in 1938 and 1977, and is reaching the end of its design life.  The proposed work is to the 1977 section of the pier.  The 1938 section will remain closed while further planning is undertaken.   
Is the pier completely closed?
The pier has been partially closed in two sections.  The 1938 section, which extends from the marina entrance to the breakwater, closed on 10 April 2020.  The 1977 section from the low landing to the marina entrance closed in May 2020.  A 150 metre section of the pier from the foreshore to the first low landing has remained open. 

Can I still access my boat in the marina?
Limited access to the marina will continue to be assessed and managed for Royal Brighton Yacht Club members to access their vessels and the hardstand. 
Can I still berth my boat at the low landing during works?
Vessels can be berthed at the first low landing, unless otherwise advised by onsite signage and temporary changes, but access onto the low landing is likely to be closed during works.  

Can I still fish from the pier during works?
Once the stage 2 work commences there will be no public access, including for anglers and fishers, to the pier for a ten week period (estimated).  Fencing and signage will be in place to communicate access restrictions.  Where possible, periodic access to the first 150 metres of the pier up to the first low landing will be facilitated to enable some restricted public access.  The low landing will remain closed during repairs unless otherwise advised.   
Why isn’t the entire pier being repaired and reopened as part of these works?   
The funding available enables works to focus on the 1977 section of the pier between the foreshore and the marina entrance.  The priority is to ensure access is restored to the areas that will have the greatest benefit to the wider community.  The 1938 section of pier will remain closed restricting public access to the breakwater.   As part of Parks Victoria’s local ports management responsibility, it will continue to work with the community and stakeholders to consider and develop the future vision for the pier.  

Are there alternative options to access the Royal Brighton Yacht Club marina?
Currently there are no alternative land-based access options to the marina or breakwater. Parks Victoria will continue to work with stakeholders to manage the implications of this closure and any possible alternative access options.

Future planning

The current repair works, funded through the Victorian Government’s Piers and Jetties economic stimulus package are designed to prolong the life of the pier approach for another 10 to 15 years ahead of future planning.  Part of the economic stimulus funded project also includes early investigations into the longer-term options for the entire pier and breakwater managed by Parks Victoria.

A project reference group comprising Parks Victoria, Bayside City Council and the Department of Transport has been established to advise on the project. Stakeholder input is and will continue to be sought at the early investigation stage ahead of future detailed planning and broader community consultation stages being developed.  This is the first step in a longer-term planning cycle to help inform future decision making and investment priorities for this important local port asset. Parks Victoria will continue to work with the community and stakeholders to consider and develop the future vision for the Middle Brighton Pier and breakwater.


Stay up to date


For regular project updates, please subscribe to the Middle Brighton Pier mailing list. 


Other information

Parks Victoria is the Local Port Manager for Port Phillip, Western Port and Port Campbell, with the three local ports combined receiving approximately 80 million visits a year, and include 263,000 hectares of waterway, marine protected areas, channels, piers and jetties, moorings and aids to navigation.

The Victorian Government has committed $24.4 million through its Piers and Jetties Stimulus Packages to upgrading and maintaining key jetties and piers across Victoria. These projects were announced as part of the government’s $2.7 billion Building Works initiative and form a key part of the $328.4 million Victorian Government investment in critical freight, boating, public transport and roads maintenance which will create or support more than 600 jobs as we recover from the coronavirus crisis.  

The jetty and pier projects include:  
• Better Piers and Waterside Facilities package: $11.6 million for upgrades and maintenance of piers in Port Phillip including Altona, Middle Brighton, Queenscliff South Piers, and the demolition of the inner section of the old Flinders Jetty in Western Port.  
• Portarlington Harbour Upgrade: $9.6 million upgrade of Portarlington Pier.  
• Pier and Jetty Maintenance package: $3.2 million upgrade of Rye Pier, Port Welshpool Marginal Wharf, Portland Trawler Wharf pontoon and Tooradin Jetty.  
This $24.4 million investment will create local jobs, provide an economic injection to regional areas and see a long-term boost for the fishing, aquaculture and tourism industries as we rebuild from the coronavirus pandemic.  

Related items

Places to see - Middle Brighton Pier

Bay Trail Duplication project :  

Bayside City Council is also undertaking the Bay Trail Duplication project to enhance a 17km stretch of bay trail between Sandown Street and the Royal Brighton Yacht Club, delivering a safer route for pedestrian and cyclists along Port Phillip





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