Juneau needs road to retain capital

Letter to the editor

Posted: Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Juneau can be a town without a road, but Juneau cannot remain the capital of Alaska without a highway.

The people of Alaska demand predicable, less-costly road access to their capital, and they are entitled to it.

During my lifetime the population of the United States has increased more than 160 million people. That is equal to five times the current population of all of Canada during the past 75 years. It's the largest increase in American history. As the population of Alaska grows (it was about 60,000 during 1930), so will the demand for convenient access to the capital. Unless Juneau makes every effort to accommodate the population centers of Alaska, the capital will move. A growing population will not tolerate an isolated capital, nor should they.

The editors of the Juneau Empire express that a road is not needed. I disagree. The Juneau Empire and Juneau itself are at a crossroads. Juneau can continue to remain a capital city with a daily newspaper, or it can be a former capital city with a weekly newspaper. The past cannot be the future, even if we'd like it so.

Bud Palmer


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