Road offers safety, recreation access

Letter to the editor

Posted: Tuesday, February 15, 2005

I would like to voice my support for the Juneau Access Alternative 2, the road to Skagway. Having a road would not only give Juneau residents the freedom to leave at a moment's notice to venture north, it would also give our neighbors the same opportunities to travel to Juneau at a much lower cost.

The road is a much more convenient method than the ferry system. I wonder if the anti-road folks, particularly those in Skagway, are considering the fact that many of us will travel to their community and spend our money on weekend getaways and family trips. We would likely drive to see the eagles outside of Haines in January or bring snowmachines up there to ride. The possibilities of increasing their winter and summer business is substantial. Skagway and Haines residents should consider how much easier it would be for their children to travel to sporting events, ski at Eaglecrest, play hockey, or for anyone to attend the Gold Medal tournaments, Juneau Jazz and Classics, fish in our salmon derbies, or participate in the many other activities Juneau has to offer.

I believe there is a safety factor in having the road as well. Emergency medical patients could be driven to Juneau instead of waiting hours or days for the ferry when flying is not an option due to poor weather. This would be critical if an expectant mother started having complications or needed special care at Bartlett Regional Hospital, care not available in Haines or Skagway.

The environmental impact statement clearly shows the road is the best alternative for Southeast Alaska. It will cost less money in the long run to build the road now. Our other Southeast neighbors will have improved ferry service when the Lynn Canal trips are rerouted to their towns to serve their communities better. Please let the Department of Transportation know that you support Alternative 2 now.

Scott Spickler


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