2010 News Archive
(April-June)
 
Rent fight chills relations between Fairbanks ice park, railroad - 6/26/10
Anchorage Daily News
The Associated Press

The Alaska Railroad, which owns the Ice Park land, wants higher rent and improvements to the property. Ice Alaska says it can't afford the rent hike, and the "improvements" would rob it of a parking lot for the championships.

[See story]

Rent dispute chills relationship between Ice Park, Alaska Railroad - 6/26/10
Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
by Amanda Bohman

FAIRBANKS — The ice park melted months ago, but relations between Ice Alaska and its landlord remain cool.

The nonprofit organization, which champions ice sculpting, leases land along the Chena River from the state-owned Alaska Railroad Corp.

[See story]

Usibelli tests coal export possibilities from Port MacKenzie - 6/23/10
Alaska Journal of Commerce
By Sean Manget

A test to determine whether coal could be shipped from Port MacKenzie to markets abroad has proven successful, officials say. The result puts Usibelli Coal Mine Inc. one step closer to opening its Wishbone Hill deposit near Palmer, and brings the Matanuska-Susitna Borough closer to housing a profitable port.

[See story]

Former mayor hypes railroad line to Port MacKenzie - 6/15/10
Anchorage Daily News
By LISA DEMER

For months now, former Anchorage Mayor Rick Mystrom has been pushing a huge railroad project -- in the Mat-Su.

It's one of the projects the Matanuska-Susitna Borough is banking on to make its 11-year-old Port MacKenzie viable.

[See story]

Governor axes over $300 million in state spending - 6/6/10
Anchorage Daily News
By SEAN COCKERHAM

Parnell cut the biggest project in the budget for the Mat-Su Borough. He vetoed $22 million of the $57 million that the Legislature appropriated for work toward an extension of the Alaska Railroad from north of Willow to Port MacKenzie. Mat-Su Economic Development Director David Hanson said the remaining money will go to design and engineer the route, buy right of way and begin construction.

[See story]

State allows railroad to use herbicides; objections raised - 6/6/10
Anchorage Daily News
By ELIZABETH BLUEMINK

State environmental regulators have approved herbicide spraying along the Alaska Railroad tracks for the first time in decades, prompting tribal and environmental groups from Eklutna to Seward to ask them to reverse the decision.

Starting Wednesday, the Alaska Railroad has permission for two years to spray 30 miles of track in a 90-mile segment between Indian and Seward with two chemicals, including glyphosate, the weed-killing ingredient in Monsanto's famous Roundup spray.
The state-owned railroad said it needs to use the chemicals to reduce risks of derailment as well as to ease concerns of federal regulators that the tracks are becoming unsafe.

[See story]

State approves herbicides along Alaska Railroad - 6/6/10
Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
by The Associated Press

ANCHORAGE, Alaska - State environmental regulators have approved spraying herbicide along Alaska Railroad tracks, but environmental groups are appealing the permit.

The Anchorage Daily News reports the railroad has permission to spray portions of the track between Indian and Seward to kill brush that could cause a train to derail. The railroad may not spray within 100 feet of a stream or pond.

[See story]

Japanese firm shows interest in Wishbone Hill coal - 5/28/10
Anchorage Daily News
By RINDI WHITE

WASILLA -- Usibelli Coal Mine Inc. has a potential buyer for its low-sulfur, bituminous Wishbone Hill coal, company officials announced Wednesday.

J-Power, a Japanese electric power wholesaler, wants to buy all the coal Usibelli can mine at the Mat-Su deposit, Usibelli spokeswoman Lorali Carter said.

[See story]

Quick economic recovery leads to jet fuel shortage for cargo planes - 5/28/10
KTUU.com
by Ted Land

"Flint Hills is our largest customer and they certainly are an important part of our product mix, our revenue stream," said Steve Silverstein with the Alaska Railroad.

Now the railroad is expecting 19 extra carloads per day.

" They're not ramping up enough for us to add additional train service, but they're ramping up enough to give us an extra revenue, which we could certainly use," Silverstein said.

[See story]

Alaska Railroad seeks president, CEO - 5/19/10
Anchorage Daily News
The Associated Press

The state-owned Alaska Railroad Corp. is taking applications for a new president and CEO. The railroad's last chief, Pat Gamble, left to head the University of Alaska system.

[See story]

Mat-Su rail link construction could start next year - 5/5/10
Alaska Journal of Commerce
By Tim Bradner

If Gov. Sean Parnell gives the OK, a $57 million appropriation in the state capital budget will allow construction to begin next spring on 11 miles of a 30-mile new Alaska Railroad spur line to the Matanuska-Susitna Borough's Port Mackenzie on upper Cook Inlet.

[See story]

Alaska Railroad world-renown for comfort, scenery - 5/5/10
Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
by Tim Mowry

FAIRBANKS, Alaska - If you really want to sit back and enjoy Alaska, consider hopping on the Alaska Railroad for a day or even a week.

With more than 500 miles of track running from Seward at the south end to Fairbanks on the north end, the railroad cuts through three different mountain ranges — the Kenai Mountains, the Chugach Mountains and the Alaska Range — and offers unforgettable views that can’t be seen from an RV or tour bus but can from one of the railroad’s luxury domed cars.

[See story]

House adds millions to already bulging capital budget - 4/25/10
Anchorage Daily News
By SEAN COCKERHAM

The largest amount added for a project Friday was $57 million for a rail connection to Port MacKenzie. It's a big chunk of the funding for that project, which has a total cost estimated around $300 million.

The idea is to extend the railroad between 30 and 45 miles from the existing rail system north of Willow down to Port MacKenzie. Borough officials hope to attract industrial development at the port.

[See story]

Deal could extend lease for Ice Alaska - 4/17/10
Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
by Christopher Eshleman

JUNEAU — A deal in the works would extend a nonprofit ice sculpting championship’s shaky rental arrangement through 2011. The option, however, would mean shifting the event’s lease from the nonprofit Ice Alaska to the Fairbanks North Star Borough government.

[See story]

Alaska lawmakers push engineering funding - 4/17/10
Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
by Christopher Eshleman

The committee's rewrite of capital spending plans this morning also includes $10 million for Fairbanks road service areas, twice the amount senators proposed last month. It also now holds $57 million for a railroad spur to industrial docks on the northern shore of Cook Inlet.

[See story]

State considers shifting Ice Alaska $1.79 million grant to borough for lease payments - 4/16/10
Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
by Dermot Cole

While the Alaska Railroad and the borough have agreed to a permit allowing Ice Alaska to stay in place in 2011 on the north side of the river, talks continue on the terms of a 35-year lease or whether the park should find a new home.

[See story]

Funding for Tanana River bridge moves ahead in Alaska Legislature - 4/16/10
Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
by Christopher Eshleman

JUNEAU — The Interior delegation this winter has thrown its weight behind a proposed bridge over the Tanana River that supporters say represents a threshold to future military investment in Interior and Southcentral Alaska.

[See story]

Railroad route - 4/9/10
Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
By JULIE STRICKER

A slice of Fairbanks history runs through the woods, muskegs and back yards in the Goldstream Valley, but many people donít recognize it as such. In places itís a well-used recreational trail. In others itís a tree-choked embankment rising out of the swamp. But occasional railroad ties and other timbers poke out, outlining the route once traveled by the engines of the Tanana Valley Railroad.

[See story]

Alaska Railroad reports higher profits despite lay-offs - 4/9/10
Alaska Journal of Commerce
By Sean Manget

Despite laying off 127 employees last September, the Alaska Railroad Corp. reported nearly $14 million in net income in 2009, slightly above the nearly $12.5 million the corporation earned the year before.

[See story]

Alaska legislators toss $40 million to Tanana River bridge project - 4/8/10
Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
by Christopher Eshleman

JUNEAU — A state Senate committee pitched $40 million in aid Wednesday to help build a bridge across the Tanana River to reach isolated military training grounds, a project that had previously generated little talk among lawmakers this winter.

[See story]

MoW equipment on the move - 4/6/10
Submitted by John Taubeneck, our ever vigilant northwest coast correspondent
Today I saw three brand new Kenshaw hydraulic tie cranes loaded and ready to head to Alaska. Each weighs 18,440 pounds. Along with the liner/tampers and spikers that went north about a month ago it looks like the Alaska RR is going to do a lot of track work this summer.
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Alaska Railroad reports nearly $14M profit in 2009 - 4/2/10
KTUU.COM
by Channel 2 News staff

ANCHORAGE, Alaska -- The Alaska Railroad Corp. earned $13.9 million on total revenues of $169.4 million in 2009, its annual report showed Thursday.

[See story]

Alaska Railroad earns nearly $14 million - 4/2/10
Anchorage Daily News
The Associated Press

Anchorage, Alaska - The Alaska Railroad Corp. says it earned $13.9 million on total revenues of $169.4 million in 2009.

[See story]

Alaska Railroad foresees more belt-tightening - 4/2/10
Anchorage Daily News

The state-owned Alaska Railroad Corp. reported $13.9 million in profits last year, up 11 percent from a year earlier.

[See story]


 
 

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