Archive for the ‘roads to nowhere’ Tag

My Turn: Some view progress as a distraction | Juneau Empire – Alaskas Capital City Online Newspaper   Leave a comment

My Turn: Some view progress as a distraction | Juneau Empire – Alaskas Capital City Online Newspaper.

The ongoing saga of the Juneau Access Road. The writer makes good points, even though I think the road is really a longer road to a more distant ferry terminal that will often be inaccessible due to avalanches.

Opinion: DOT’s highways to nowhere   Leave a comment

Opinion: DOT’s highways to nowhere | Juneau Empire – Alaska’s Capital City Online Newspaper.

In my ongoing commitment to highlight Alaskan issues, here is yet another take (albeit a muddled one) on the Juneau Access Road, which is indeed a road to the middle of nowhere.

HINT: The comments are more salient than the opinion piece.

Posted April 30, 2014 by aurorawatcherak in Alaska

Tagged with , , ,

Opinion: Measuring ‘the road’s’ value without subsidies | Juneau Empire – Alaska’s Capital City Online Newspaper   Leave a comment

Opinion: Measuring ‘the road’s’ value without subsidies | Juneau Empire – Alaska’s Capital City Online Newspaper.

Does Juneau really need a highway? | PostIndependent.com   Leave a comment

Does Juneau really need a highway? | PostIndependent.com.

For the record, I’m not opposed to the Kensington Mine. Clearly, I support roads to resources such as Ambler and (in our dreams) Nome. Bjorn and I agree that the road is a bad idea, but we work from completely different foundations. Alaska has plenty of unspoiled wilderness. We could build hundreds of miles of road and still not scratch the surface of our unspoiled wilderness. I don’t except the premise that roads ruin everything. They provide access to the wilderness that otherwise would not exist and that’s a GOOD thing.

The Juneau Access Road, however, is not. It’s a 51-mile road that stops well short of providing Juneau land access to the rest of the world. It’ll be expensive to build and closed much of the year due to avalanche danger. It will make a great jobs program for the Howitzer crews.

If Coeur Alaska wants a road, the State of Alaska should work with them to build on with Coeur’s own dollars. What? Doesn’t that contradict what I said about the Ambler Road? No, because the Ambler Road would provide access to the outside world for isolated villages as well as support a mining region. Similar to the Pogo Mine near Fairbanks, this road really has no purpose other than to provide a road to the mine, unless they build the new ferry terminal, which makes no economic sense at all. If at some point, the engineers figure out how to run that road all the way to Haines and keep it open for at least 48 weeks a year, the State of Alaska and Coeur should be able to work out the access because good sense would dictate we’d write it into the original permitting plan.

Or, hey, it might just be easier to move the state capitol to the mainland where the majority of the population could access it without driving through a foreign country.

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