Client: Lake and Peninsula Borough
Location: Lake and Peninsula Borough, AK
Project Date: 2012
Project Lead: Heather Stewart
Agnew::Beck was hired by the Lake and Peninsula Borough to update their Comprehensive Plan. Building from past planning efforts, this plan focuses on identifying specific, tangible, near term actions that can be address the challenges and opportunities facing the region.
This work has been done from the ground up. Earlier this year, borough staff, Planning Commission and Assembly members, working with consultants, held workshops in fourteen Borough communities. The 2011 Bristol Bay Visioning project and other past planning efforts were used as a starting point for these workshops. Each community was asked to expand upon and refine this information. Building from what we heard, we worked with Borough staff and the Planning Commission to develop the draft plan, focused on strategies for action in sub-regions and borough-wide.
The plan begins with an honest look at the challenges facing regional communities. These include high and rising costs of living, in particular the cost of energy, high and rising access costs, declining populations and risks of imminent school closure, aging water, sewer electricity generation systems, and limited local jobs.
The plan focuses on five broad areas: strategies for more jobs for locals in and out of the village; strategies to reduce the cost of living and increase the quality of rural life; to push ahead with regional-benefiting capital projects; find new approaches to providing a quality education; and to encourage hard work, high standards, consequences and rewards. Some of the specific examples of actions identified in the plan include:
- Creation of a regional jobs and housing clearinghouse, where residents and communities could post information on skills and resources available (e.g. housing for rent) and employers or others seeking services to post job announcements and requests for proposals.
- Plans for new job training partnerships, and new job supporting programs and infrastructure, focused on jobs in tourism, commercial fishing, energy and local service provision.
- Plans for key infrastructure projects, including a dock at Chignik Bay, work on the Williamsport Pile Bay Road, and support for small energy projects – wind, hydro – in villages where this is practical.
The plan was adopted by the Lake and Peninsula Borough Assembly in 2012.