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Your role in planning our future road system

This year marks more than 30 years since the 1991 Fairbanks North Star Borough (FNSB) Comprehensive Roads Plan was adopted by the Borough Assembly. As one of the borough’s longest-standing plans, the 1991 Roads Plan guided our road network and related requirements for how and where these roads were built.

The 1991 plan created better access and connections across the borough and throughout our neighborhoods. Roads like Chena Point Avenue in West Fairbanks started as a line on a map in the 1991 plan. Today, it is one of the most traveled roadways in borough service areas, serving local roads and providing safe access to hundreds of lots and residences.

This year, the borough begins the critical process of updating the 1991 plan to better respond to the ways the community has and is projected to change. We experienced growth in the 1990s and 2000s in West Fairbanks and have recent. Projected population growth in the North Pole and Badger Road Areas as the community welcomes incoming F-35 and KC-135 personnel and their families who will live off Eielson Air Force Base. The plan should also set a vision and goals with recommended corridors and connections for how we want our future community road system to look and work. At the same time, development patterns and other changes may call for alternative corridors. Like the 1991 plan, the updated plan should be flexible to allow new ideas for achieving our vision.

The 1991 plan included proposed corridors and connections that are not possible due to steep grades or natural features like wetlands. Today, we can identify those wetlands, areas of permafrost melt, topography, and more with advanced elevation data (LIDAR). We can better assess environmental constraints to see where connections can be made and where they cannot.

It is time to work together to create an updated plan that will serve our community’s immediate and future needs. Let’s make safer, better-connected roads.

For us to do this right, we need your feedback. You can start by checking out the project website, There, you can learn more about the purpose of the plan, the process, and the schedule, and you can share your ideas on where you would like to see better connections, better access, and other road improvements in your neighborhood. You can also check out the 1991 plan and compare that to the current road system in your area and the community.

Now through Oct. 15 take a 10-minute survey and use a map of our community to tell us what is on your mind. This plan needs community input to make it successful. The creation of a plan to build safer, better-connected roads in our community depends on you.

We look forward to hearing from you. If you have any questions, please call my office at 459-1304.

Bryce J. Ward is mayor of the Fairbanks North Star Borough.

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