The front page of the Juneau Empire on June 12, 1994. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)

The front page of the Juneau Empire on June 12, 1994. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)

Empire Archives: Juneau’s history for the week ending June 15

Three decades of capital city coverage.

Empire Archives is a series printed every Saturday featuring a short compilation of headline stories in the Juneau Empire from archived editions in 1984, 1994 and 2004.

This week in 1984, for Katherine Stevenson and 88 fellow tenants at the Marine View Apartments, Juneau’s low-cost housing crunch got worse Monday with the notification the 10-year-old building was being closed. “The last time I looked for an apartment it took two months to find anything,” said Stevenson, a single mother of two. Tenants of the Alaska State Housing Authority facility were given 90 days to vacate after an engineering study showed it was unsafe in the event of a major earthquake. “The deposit on some of those apartments is outrageous,” said Stevenson, who wonders whether the $500 for relocation committed by the Alaska State Housing Authority is nearly enough. Marine View Acting Manager Sue Slater agreed the closure will create problems, but said ASHA is doing all it can to fund affordable housing for those forced to move.

On Oct. 10, 1986, the nine-story Marine View Apartment building downtown was officially sold to a Seattle developer hoping to renovate the building into an office, low-income apartments and retail space. The $3.7 million bid was paid off during the week, finalizing the developer’s agreement with the Alaska State Housing Authority.

Original Story: “Closure puts squeeze on low-income housing,” by Kyoko Ikenoue. 6/12/1984.

This week in 1994, the U.S. Coast Guard says metal pins that held up a gangplank failed on the cruise ship Yorktown Clipper on Saturday morning, causing an accident that killed one passenger and injured four others at the downtown dock. Three of the passengers clung to the dangling metal plank for more than an hour before they were rescued by medical personnel. Passengers were getting off the 257-foot ship at about 6:25 a.m. Saturday when the ramp broke away, tossing one woman into the water. She later died. Metal pins holding the ramp to the deck of the vessel failed, said Ensign Lindsay Dew of the U.S. Coast Guard Marine Safety Office investigations staff in Juneau. It’s unknown if the pins were defective or broke away from their brackets because of metal fatigue, Dew said. “It appears what happened is the plates (holding the pins) separated somehow, causing the pins to have less support,” said Lt. Brian Willis of the Marine Safety Office. “The pins are the sole support for the (gangplank). The pins are gone. They probably went into the water.”

Original Story: “Gangway fails; one dead,” by Annabel Lund. 6/12/1994.

This week in 2004, Juneau residents should start thinking about how to deal with the 30,000 tons of garbage they generate every year. Waste Management, Juneau’s primary garbage management provider, will shut down its two incinerators by June 30 partly because the incinerators have reached the end of their 20-year lifespan and partly because it will cost the company a lot of money to make the two incinerators meet new federal regulations on pollutant controls. Michael Allison, Waste Management’s Southeast Alaska district manager, said the company is unlikely to buy new incinerators because they are expensive. Without the incinerators burning the trash and reducing its size, Allison estimates that Waste Management’s landfill at Lemon Creek has roughly 30 years to go. “We are filling up instead of filling out,” Allison said. To address Juneau’s long-term garbage problem, there have been efforts from the city government, grassroots groups and corporations to encourage recycling and reduce consumption.

Today the landfill has an estimated 20 years of life left, with the landfill taking in an estimated 36,000 tons of trash a year. Numerous efforts to reduce that volume have been made in recent years including an agreement with cruise lines to greatly reduce what they offload, plus increasing recycling and composting efforts.

Original Story: “Can recycling save city from its garbage?” by I-Chun Che. 6/13/2004.

• Contact Mark Sabbatini at or (907) 957-2306.

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