Although the Japanese Dock’s days are numbered, it’s got most of the summer to attract throngs of tourists to Newport to look at the dock, perhaps touch it, and be moved by its symbolizing last year’s Japanese earthquake and tsunami which took thousands of live and decimated the Japanese coastline.
State parks says successful demolition bidder Ballard Diving and Storage of Vancouver won’t begin chopping up the dock until the week of July 30th, a process that will take the better part of a week. State parks officials decided to deal with the dock where it is, so as to reduce the risk of spreading invasive species which still cling to the bottom of the dock and inside it, in tiny holes and crevasses.
State parks also recommends that those who want to visit the dock, or revisit it, can do so by checking local tide tables so they can get close to it. Visit at or close to low tide. For tide information, click here. While in the area be aware of traffic congestion on NW Ocean View Drive and use the large parking lot opposite Agate State Beach, just north of the hotel. While on the beach, especially with children, be aware varying surf levels and sneaker waves. And they emphasize “PLEASE STAY OFF THE DOCK.”
Newport Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Lorna Davis said the dock has been a big tourist plus for Newport with people coming in from all over the northwest, even from foreign counties, to witness first hand a piece of the Japanese tragedy of last year. Davis said “While the arrival of the dock continues to trigger an economic shot-in-the-arm for Newport hotels, restaurants and grocery stores, we should appreciate and never forget where it came from and the lost lives it left behind in Japan.”