I appreciated Paula Simpson’s letter to the editor in Thursday’s Juneau Empire. When I was running for school board a few years ago, Paulette and I both recognized that inappropriate inflated population projections were being used and, if a second high school was to be built, it should be designed so that parts of it can be closed off to make a smaller school.
Population projections continue to show a population decline in Juneau in coming years. For that reason, we need to be careful about committing to large capital projects that a smaller population either doesn’t need or can’t afford. For example, extremely expensive projects that need to be reevaluated in light of smaller populations should include the second crossing and the Lynn Canal Road. For these projects, the benefits and our ability to pay have shrunken along with Juneau’s population.
This photo shows the Douglas Bridge. The City and Borough of Juneau and state of Alaska are collaborating on plans for a potential second crossing. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire File)