Put it on the tax rolls

The city’s Heritage Land Bank plans to offer various concepts for development of land near the downtown area that once was the home of a hospital.

The 15-acre parcel has been unused since 1997. It is surrounded by a chain-link fence and once was home for the 400-bed Alaska Native Medical Center, which opened in 1953 to care for Alaska Natives suffering from tuberculosis. The city acquired the land in 2001.

The tract is located at the intersection of E. 3rd Avenue and Gambell Street, near the Brother Francis Shelter, Bean’s Cafe and the Anchorage Correctional Complex.

The city land bank owns the property and has scheduled a public meeting today on what to do with the site overlooking the Ship Creek industrial area. Officials plan to offer four concepts that blend housing, commercial uses, parks and open space, Nicole Jones-Vogel, a land management officer with the Heritage Land Bank told the Anchorage Daily News. The city eventually will create a master plan for the property.

The property is located in a seismic zone so any major development would require additional engineering, creating added costs, Jones-Vogel told the newspaper, and any soil or water contamination would have to be mitigated before construction.

We fully support development of the old hospital tract. As it sits now, it is of little use to the city or anybody else. But what we could support more is the idea of somehow putting the land on the city’s tax rolls to generate revenue and lighten the load now borne by property taxpayers.

That would be win-win for everyone. What’s not to like?




2 Responses to Put it on the tax rolls

  1. Karl Schroeder November 9, 2018 at 10:33 am

    Suggest a sealed bid auction that is adequately advertised. This will provide the highest and best use for the property.

  2. Morrigan November 9, 2018 at 5:09 pm

    Excellent idea…
    Anybody care to bet how long it will take for a non-profit organization to acquire the property, build subsidized low-income housing, and contribute nothing to municipal tax rolls…


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