The Port of Anchorage is under renovation by engineering firm CH2MHill. “Ninety percent of the goods in the state of Alaska pass through that port,” chariman Ernie Hall said. “It’s a key part of the infrastructure of the state and we’ve got to finish this project.” He stressed that this renovation was priority.
Hall and other assembly members will have to approve the appointment of CH2MHill to helm the project before any work can be done. The city has a pending lawsuit that alleges faulty port construction work was done by VECO, a company CH2MHill purchased after the work in question had been completed.
Senator Kevin Meyer said the main complications revolve around the funding of the project. Mayor Sullivan sent his capital budget to Juneau, asking the legislature for $250 million for the port renovation. The project is years behind schedule and hundreds of millions of dollars over budget.
“To ask the legislature for money right now is going to be difficult,” Meyer said. “Primarily because we already have so many projects that are in the works.”
The renovation is so important because the state relies on the port as its major import facility. The federal government also relies on the port for the military.
Senator Meyer hopes the project can find funding in desperate hopes to renovate the port.