Preliminary finding identifies downtown site as preferred for small cruise ship facility

    Port Engineer Erich Schaal (right) along with Port Director Carl Uchytil on Action Line

    Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - Preliminary findings on the Small Ship Infrastructure Master Plan are out.

    Port Engineer Erich Schaal of the CBJ Docks and Harbors Department talked about the location for such a facility while a guest on Action Line.

    He said they looked at six different sites including Auke Bay and five downtown possibilities.  Industry officials said they wanted to stay downtown.

    "We really like the idea of augmenting the Seadrome facility down here where our offices are next to the cruise ship docks and by the Coast Guard and adding a float someday in the future that is roughly about 350 feet long.    We see that meeting the needs and we can add the infrastructure that the vessels ask for..."

    Schaal encouraged the public to learn more about the planning process for this project by going to the department's web site.

    It is not a project that is going to happen overnight.  "This is a decades-long planning vision,": Schaal said.  "I think the earliest that we'd break ground on any sort of development coming out of this planning exercise is two or three, four years away."

    Schaal added that several economic studies indicate that the small cruise ship visitor is very beneficial.  Per capita spending is higher than a person who comes to Juneau via a large cruise ship since they will spend more than one day here.



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