Rarely has a CBJ action upset me as much as the Planning Commission’s decision to turn Shattuck Way into a pedestrian only walkway. The only beneficiary of this action appears to be a wealthy property owner, who bought an old building that gets some wear and tear every winter when the snow comes down and must be plowed out. That problem existed when he bought it, so he doesn’t get any sympathy from me. He has been trying for a long time to sell the property at a high price — perhaps he is motivated now more by the lack of a buyer than by any snow removal wear and tear.
More than that, Shattuck Way has provided me and countless others for 30 years with easy access (and often a parking spot) to Juneau Drug and other Front Street businesses, particularly when the cruise ships are in town. It is also handy for people with limited mobility. But the Planning Commission seemed to give more weight to one property owner than to all other downtown interests. I hope the Assembly reverses this ill-advised decision and does so quickly. As I see it, closing Shattuck Way to cars is ultimately just one more action that favors tourism over locals in downtown Juneau’s historic district.
Long-time customer of Front Street businesses and former resident of a good old Gross-Alaska apartment