PEL and Concepts Review

The Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities (DOT&PF) is currently completing a Planning and Environmental Linkages Study (PEL) focusing on the area surrounding the Seward Highway corridor from approximately the Tudor Road interchange to the 20th Avenue intersection through Midtown Anchorage. The intersections in the corridor have some of the longest delays and highest crash rates in the state. The Seward Highway also creates challenges for vehicles, bicycles and pedestrians trying to cross from the residential area on the east to the commercial area on the west.

The PEL is considering all transportation modes, land uses, the environment and people to evaluate the inter-related issues surrounding the Seward Highway and wider Midtown Area, with a focus on congestion review in the Midtown area. A corridor vision has been developed which is: “Improve safety and mobility for all users on the Seward Highway while enhancing east-west multi-modal, safety, connectivity, and access for Midtown Anchorage.”

The outcome of the PEL will be a planning document that identifies a prioritized plan consisting of several distinct projects that work in concert to achieve the shared vision for all modes of traffic in Midtown Anchorage. Following completion of the PEL, DOT&PF will begin design and environmental permitting to construct the highest priority project or projects. The PEL is in the early stages of concept development, and concepts are broadly grouped into two families. The first family is One-Way Frontage Road Concepts, which propose access to Midtown via at-grade one-way “frontage” roads that provide access to, from and through Midtown. The second family is Two-Way Frontage Road Concepts, which propose access to Midtown via a two-way at-grade “frontage” road. The Seward Highway will be reconstructed as either an elevated or depressed road, separate from local Midtown traffic but connected in multiple locations to enable traffic to enter or exit to Midtown.

Your feedback is appreciated. Following are questions we would appreciate your feedback on.

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* 1. What features would you like to add to the bike and pedestrian concept?

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* 2. DOT&PF is conducting open houses; multiple advisory groups with stakeholders, businesses, and representatives from the community councils, one-on-one meetings with interested residents and businesses, a website and other social media.

Do you have additional suggestions for public outreach efforts that our team should consider?

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* 3. What are the critical elements of a successful transportation plan for Midtown?

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* 4. What things should absolutely be avoided?

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* 5. Which concept or concepts seem the most promising for resolving transportation issues with the least impacts? Click here to view concepts.