Owners of collapsed bluff disputed in Anchorage

Posted: Tuesday, May 04, 2010

ANCHORAGE - When a bluff collapsed in the 1964 earthquake at Anchorage, it created about 2 acres of coastal property in the Turnagain neighborhood of the city.

Ownership of the ocean-view land remains in dispute.

The Anchorage Daily News reports the people who own the bluff property say they own everything out to the water. The city says it owns a strip of land between the bluff and the mudflats.

After the earthquake, the city banned any development there until 1978, and then put special restrictions on it.

The disputed land abuts the west side of Lyn Ary Park, and is alongside the Tony Knowles Coastal Trail, which has an easement. A flower garden in memory of a drunken driving victim sits on part of the land.

The city agreed last fall to consider a settlement that could result in the private property owners being allowed to buy the disputed land for as much as $300,000.

The Turnagain Community Council asked the city to fight to keep the property as park land. President Breck Tostevin said it wants to ensure there's a green buffer between the coastal trail and housing that might go up.

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