Last week the Kodiak Island Borough Assembly narrowed down its state legislative capital improvement projects priority list for the 2014 legislative session. From a pool of about 16 projects, the assembly, with the help of Borough lobbyist Mark Hickey and Kodiak’s Representative Alan Austerman, narrowed its list down to eight tentative items. All week KMXT has been taking you through those eight projects, sharing some of the discussions had during last week’s work session.
The final three items on the list deal with various road improvements, starting with service area road paving improvements. Borough Manager Bud Cassidy said staff has been working closely with the road service districts to find out the needs in each of the four areas.
“There’s been an ongoing attempt to try to get service areas to try and prioritize those roads in their service districts so that if there is a statewide bond initiative for transportation, like there was a few years ago, that we will be ready with priorities from the different service areas.”
Another project on the CIP list will help improve traffic flow at East Elementary School, which Cassidy said is much needed.
“If you drive to East Elementary School when kids are being taken there or when it’s time to go home, it’s a pretty crowded parking lot along with large buses and loading and unloading of folks so this provides a design that will provide another exit.”
The borough expects to contribute $100,000 and is requesting $900,000 from the state for the estimated $1 million traffic flow improvements.
Last on the list are improvements to Peterson Elementary School’s parking lot. The borough is looking for $900,000 from the state to put toward paving the pothole-ridden lot.
“It’s an old school, it’s never been paved. I know we spend, I don’t want to say substantial amount of money, but we go in there in the spring and in the fall to grade the parking lot. I think they have better roads in Beirut, Lebanon sometimes it’s in such bad shape. Obviously we’ll try to provide paving in a number of places to eliminate some of the issues with dust and maintenance.”
Assemblyman Aaron Griffin, who phoned in to last Thursday’s work session, suggested the borough try to pair this project with the state’s runway extension projects that are supposed to take place next summer.
“Since they’ll be setting up the asphalt plant pretty much a block away from the school, and it wouldn’t be that big of deal really to kind of swing graders in and get this done on top of that. I’m not sure if we looked at that if that was a state contract using federal dollars for the extension, but that would be a really good time to really look at doing that.”
The assembly will vote on whether or not to accept the eight item CIP list during its regular meeting tomorrow night. From there the list will be sent off to Juneau where it will be reviewed by Governor Sean Parnell and state legislators.