Panama City approves final payment on marina bulkheads damaged by Hurricane Michael

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PANAMA CITY — Scratch off one more bill for Panama City Hurricane Michael recovery.

The Panama City Commission has approved the final payment for bulkhead repairs for the Panama City Marina, which was damaged by Hurricane Michael more than three years ago.

The construction for the bulkheads was completed by Mainline Construction LLC, and $237,283.66 was the final payment for the project.

“It’s been a very long three years,” Commissioner Jenna Flint-Haligas said during the meeting for the payment approval. “That is awesome.”

“The marina took a large hit from the number of vessels that crashed against the marina wall and really compromised the T-dock in particular,” City Manager Mark McQueen said of Hurricane Michael damage.

The Panama City Commission has approved the final payment for bulkhead repairs for the Panama City Marina, pictured in this file photo May 25. The marina was damaged by Hurricane Michael more than three years ago.
The Panama City Commission has approved the final payment for bulkhead repairs for the Panama City Marina, pictured in this file photo May 25. The marina was damaged by Hurricane Michael more than three years ago.

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City officials will now be working on the next development for the marina, which includes wet slips and the T-dock itself. McQueen said the city will also be working on the inland space, where it aims to put in a splash pad and playground for kids, a park area and a promenade that will go around the entire marina.

As for the timeline, it still might be a while before residents see a fully functional marina, McQueen said, adding that it is an iterative process and the city is working with state agencies to get permits. McQueen said it will take another two to three years for the marina to be completely restored.

“We’ll be coming back to the city commission with the proposed designs and gaining final citizen input to everything,” McQueen said. “But we’re building on the Victor Dover plans that were created through the charrette process, and I think that all of our citizens are going to be pleased when this takes place.”

City officials are also still waiting to hear back from FEMA to make a determination regarding the Civic Center, which was also destroyed by Hurricane Michael.

McQueen said the overall funding for this entire project was balanced with FEMA reimbursements, grant money, city savings and capital investment programs that the city has been doing.

After making this important step, McQueen said it is a tribute to the residents and shows that the city is committed to rebuilding the community after Michael.

“I think that when we see Panama City is moving forward in its reconstruction, we see it everywhere across the city,” McQueen said. “We still have a long way to go, we still have potholes, we still have water and sewer lines that need to be replaced and we’re very grateful to our governor and his staff that have been helping us with grant funding. With that, our heroes really are the citizens in this whole thing.”

This article originally appeared on The News Herald: Hurricane Michael: Panama City to pay off marina bulkhead repairs

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