Juneau Assembly gets updates on housing, snow removal

The City and Borough of Juneau should hire a dedicated housing coordinator.

That’s the recommendation of the Juneau Affordable Housing Commission.

The CBJ Assembly reviewed the commission’s recommendations on Monday as a Committee of the Whole.

The lack of sufficient housing has been a decades-long problem in the Capital City, and finding solutions is a priority of the current Assembly. The Committee of the Whole has been meeting with stakeholders since January.

The Affordable Housing Commission’s memo says the housing coordinator “must be a permanent, high profile position within the CBJ, tasked with staying on top of housing trends, exploring out of the box strategies, applying best practices, and monitoring and communicating progress towards key benchmarks.”

The Commission also recommends the CBJ adopt a long-term Housing Plan and sell city-owned land in the Peterson Hill and Switzer Creek areas to developers.

The Commission’s recommendations are similar to Assembly proposals, according to Deputy Mayor Mary Becker, who chairs the Assembly’s ad hoc Housing Committee.

In other city news, a new Downtown Snow Storage facility at the Rock Dump should be completed by August 1st.

CBJ Engineering Director Rorie Watt says the city has about $2 million in a capital project fund to build snow storage facilities both downtown and in the Mendenhall Valley. The city did a study of 40 possible snow storage locations, and Watt says the Rock Dump was the only practical site in the downtown area. He says the city is still considering location options for a Mendenhall Valley Snow Storage facility.

Snow disposal is regulated under state water quality standards.

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