It will likely be fall before a traffic revision at Auke Bay is finalized. But state DOT officials say they are listening to local concerns.
The project calls for a roundabout at the intersection of Glacier Highway and Back Loop Road, but residents say that’s not the answer.
The state project, to be built by the Alaska Department of Transportation, has an emotional side and twice petitioners have taken their fears to city hall.
Auke Bay resident Sally Burnham on Monday presented the Juneau Assembly with a thousand signatures collected at various Auke Bay businesses. Last month, Friends of Auke Bay turned in petitions signed by 450 people.
Burnham owns Custom Cuts. She says she’s already moved her business once due to road construction. She handed each Assembly member a thick stack of papers with signatures of people all over Juneau who object to the roundabout, which could mean the demise of DeHart’s convenience store and gas station.
“We are petitioning to protect and enhance the Auke Bay neighborhoods as a safe, walk able place to live, dine, shop, recreate, work and transit,” Burnham says.
She says DOT needs to rethink the plans for the area.
That’s exactly what’s happened, according to DOT spokesman Jeremy Woodrow. “DOT is definitely looking at other alternatives for the corridor there, specifically the roundabout option,” he says.
Woodrow says project engineers are looking at how the project can meet neighborhood concerns and still resolve area traffic issues.
The project is part of the Auke Bay Corridor Study to improve pedestrian and vehicle safety. It includes the Auke Bay roundabout or other solution; improvements at Glacier Highway, Fritz Cove Road, and the south entrance to the University of Alaska Southeast; sidewalks along Glacier Highway from Fritz Cove Road to Seaview Avenue and to the North UAS Access intersection; and wider lanes and shoulders.
- It aims to preserve Alaska Native culture by giving tribes and tribal organizations the ability to oversee local child welfare problems, rather than social workers coming in from outside their communities. That often results in children being removed from their communities.
- Dressed in full Gwich’in regalia, Potts recounted growing up in a modest dirt-floor hunting cabin in Eagle, losing someone close to suicide, and taking the conventions theme of strength in unity to get back to enjoying life again.
- The Juneau School District wants to consolidate its two high school football programs and cheer squads. Superintendent Dr. Mark Miller said at a press conference Thursday afternoon that the decision to send a formal request to the Alaska School Activities Association has been two years in the making.
- Three helmets, two hats, a headdress and a beaded shirt are from as far back as the 1600s to about 1890. They will be stored through the National Park Service, with access being granted to the Tlingit clans.