According to the Alaska Department of Natural Resources Division of Parks and Recreation, the Chugach State Park started construction on the Glen Alps parking lot expansion this week. It's the Park's hope that the new lot will help alleviate some of the congestion and parking issues incurred by Glen Alps enthusiasts in the past.
The Glen Alps trailhead is one of the primary gateways into Anchorage's backyard wilderness playground, Chugach State Park, and by far the most popular entry point on the Hillside. Trailhead parking is often frustratingly dense, with many hikers parking their cars and trucks along the road, despite the "No Parking" signs and the risk of getting ticketed and fined. For some hikers, runners and bikers the risk is totally worth it, for others ... not so much. Hopefully a new lot will make things easier and more accessible to Anchorage's law abiding outdoors men and women.
The new parking lot is expected to add an extra 50 spaces to the 150 already in existence. The new, $700,000 gravel lot will be located on what is currently a wildflower meadow, on some 1.5 acres behind the caretaker's cabin. The project is expected to be complete by the end of May 2013.
One question remains: Only 50 spaces? Is that really enough? Stand by for an argument coming soon to a Facebook page or message board near you.