Letters to the Editor

Letter: We don’t want the West Susitna road

Project No. 34206 should be deleted from the Alaska Department of Transportation draft Statewide Transportation Improvement Program (STIP) 2024-2027.

Project 34206 is for 15.5 miles, costing $82.5 million, the first segment of the governor’s gift to the international mining industry, the 110-mile West Susitna industrial mining road. It is 15.5 miles of road and bridges across the Big and Little Susitna Rivers, Fish Creek, and skirting around Flathorn Lake.

The Susitna River Bridge is thought to cross at Susitna Station, one of the richest cultural spots in this state. No way is $82.5 million going to pay for that many bridges and that much road work. Tremendous cost overruns are guaranteed and could drive the cost up to $200 million. And at this time, the exact route has not even been chosen.

The state administration looks to be segmenting different parts of the 110-mile overall road to dilute public comment and participation, along with adequate cultural and environmental review.

Sept. 3 is the deadline for public comment. Mention the project number and comment through email at STIP@publicinput.com, or by phone voicemail at 855-925-2801, code 2191.

— Becky Long


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Becky Long

Becky Long is a former member of the Alaska Railroad Citizen’s Advisory Committee on Vegetation Management.