Iconic Atlantic City pier heads to auction

June 29, 2011 03:00PM

The Steel Pier at Atlantic City

An Atlantic City icon is heading to auction this summer, CB Richard Ellis announced today. The brokerage’s auction services arm is bringing the Steel Pier at Trump Taj Mahal to an open-cry auction, Aug. 25, with a minimum bid of $2.5 million. The pier, which opened in 1898, used to be known as the site of Miss America competitions, the High Diving horse, and four theaters that hosted 12,000 patrons being entertained by the likes of Frank Sinatra. Following years of neglect, two fires, and Atlantic City’s overall slump, the Steel Pier shut down. It was reopened in 1993 thanks to repairs funded by developer Donald Trump. The 965-foot-long pier is leased to an amusement park through 2016, which features 24 rides, games and a food court. But permits are in place for development of the pier into a hotel, residential, retail or mixed-use project. For example, according to CBRE, the space could hold a 228-room hotel with a 33,672-square-foot casino and bars and restaurants. Paul Galanis, managing director of CBRE Auction Services, said the auction “represents an opportunity for an investor to own a piece of real estate history, collect income immediately, and transform this amazing engineering feat extending 965 feet into the Atlantic Ocean into a profitable concept befitting of the 21st century.” — Adam Fusfeld