The Lane’s Cove seawall rehabilitation project is on track for completion by December, and city officials say it should wind up costing city taxpayers well under $1 million.

The project, being carried out by Charter Contracting Inc. LLC of Boston, continues toward rebuilding the seawall’s north quay and the outside and southern breakwaters, said Mike Hale, Gloucester’s public works director, on Thursday.

Hale said officials from the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency are expected to inspect the work next week.

“But when we’re done, we’re going to have a solid wall that is going to look like it once did,” Hale said. He also said that work on the breakwaters’ core walls includes a mix of concrete wrapped in granite, in line with the previous construction.

“I think it’s going to be something we can model other seawalls after,” he said. “I’m happy, and I think other people are pleased as well.”

A partnership with the state and federal emergency management agencies netted $2.1 million for the project, with $1 million in FEMA aid coming for storm damage to the wall in 2013, and another $1 million received from the state last year in the form of a grant for dams and seawall repairs.  

Gloucester’s City Council, meanwhile, approved borrowing and allocating up to $3.5 million to cover preliminary cost estimates for the overall work. The winning bid from Charter Contracting — the same contractor that headed up the two-year harbor cleanup project off Harbor Loop for National Grid — came in at $2.61 million, city Purchasing Agent Donna Compton confirmed, leaving $561,000 to be paid by the city, pending any potential cost overruns.

“This balance will be locally funded, but we’ve been committed to taking care of this right from the start,” Hale said.

“This is the way this should work, with us, the state and the federal government working together,” Hale continued. “This is a necessary piece of infrastructure, it provides safe haven during emergencies, it’s obviously important to people who moor boats there, and there is an aesthetic piece to it.

“People visit there, artists paint there, photographers take photos there,” he said. “It’s an important piece of the community, and we want people to be proud of it when it’s done.”

Ray Lamont can be reached at 978-675-2705 or

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