News from Patrick Flynn

Bikes, KABATA, planes and IM tests

It’s been an interesting week since my last post – by some measures rather quiet and by others quite busy.  Here’s what’s going on:


A neighbor, David Millen, sent an e-mail to Assembly members advocating for improved bicycle corridors in Anchorage.  That same message appeared today as a letter to the editor in the local paper.  I began investigating some of the issues Mr. Millen raised and was reminded that Anchorage is developing a Bike Plan.  If you’re a bicycle commuter, or want to be, I strongly suggest getting involved in that process.


The AMATS Policy Committee, of which I am a member, and the AMATS Technical Committee, which works through various aspects of issues to be considered by the Policy Committee, held a joint work session on Thursday, June 26.  The only issue discussed was the Knik Arm Bridge & Toll Authority and how we plan to either keep or remove the Knik Arm Bridge from the Long Range Transporation Plan.  If the bridge is in the LRTP, which it currently is, it can be built but if it’s not, it can’t.  Removing it is not a simple process so the discussion centered on how conditions have changed since the Environmental Impact Statement process began and how those changes might affect the Record of Decision.  In other words, even if the EIS says it’s okay to build the bridge from an environmental standpoint, it is possible that tightened credit markets or alternative transportation options could make the project unfeasible.  Both committees will work to figure out the best method for moving forward but no significant actions will occur until the Record of Decision is issued, likely in September or October.

A nicely encapsulated summary of the issues appeared in a recent ADN editorial.


Merrill Field, home to a significant portion of Anchorage’s general aviation community, is a busy place.  So much so that airport management is working to add hanger space along its western edge.  Because the airport abuts residential neighborhoods I asked for information about noise mitigation plans associated with this development and received a copy of the site plan used for other hanger developments in this area, which was endorsed by the Municipal Airports Aviation Advisory Commission, a body that includes a Fairview resident.  Based on what I know I’m inclined to support this project but welcome any feedback from airport neighbors.

IM testing:

Okay, everyone knows the Assembly is considering an ordinance that would forestall the impending demise of the existing IM testing program, right?  So what’s taking so long?  At our Tuesday meeting the original ordinance was replaced by one with the same language but a broader title.  That allows more flexibility as Assembly members and the administration propose amendments.  The local paper did a pretty good job explaining the ideas on the table in an article Tuesday with a follow-up on Wednesday.  To make a long story short, we’ll have a July 11 work session on this issue and (hopefully) take final action at our July 15 meeting.

Please let me know if you have thoughts or comments on any of the above, or other topics!



This contribution was made on Saturday, 28. June 2008 at 13:52 and was published under the category Neighborhoods. You can follow comments on this entry through the RSS-Feed.

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  1. that draft bike route map looks pretty good! i wonder about funding for those improvements? any insight on how that might be accomplished? this is one of those areas that would be well worth doing but would be a hard sell to voters as a bond proposition. only about two percent of workers commute by bike nationally. still, we might be seeing a tipping point recently. i see many more people out there recently during rush hours. in our small office, one day earlier this month, six out of 13 of us rode to work. it might also be nice if the assembly considered requiring parking lots over a certain size to include secure bike racks. many businesses have them anyway, but many others don’t have anything at all. if we require spaces for cars, why not bikes too? seems reasonable.

    Comment: clark – 29. June 2008 @ 7:15 am

  2. and i really liked david millen’s message, by the way. MOA/APD is way behind the curve on this one in their official policy. “Stay away from busy streets and try to have your biking done before 4 pm.” i’ll tell you what… myself and a lot of others are going to be out there, between 7 and 9 am and 4 and 6 pm, every workday on any road we choose that’s not marked bicycles prohibited. get used to it, drivers!

    Comment: clark – 29. June 2008 @ 7:23 am

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