Following a combination of extreme high tides, a storm surge, and a winter storm event on December 4 that included heavy winds, Lowell Point Road has been reduced to one lane of traffic in some areas. According to a statement issued by the City of Seward, the ocean side of the road has storm water erosion in most areas, and the mountain along the land side of the road is depositing loose rock and gravel along the road.
On Dec. 7, the City of Seward declared a state of emergency to seek assistance from the borough with repairing the damage. According to a letter from City Manager Jim Hunt to Borough Mayor Charlie Pierce, the city is working to make needed repairs and mitigate additional damage, but does not have the fiscal resources to implement a permanent solution.
Hunt wrote in the letter, “an assessment of the severity and extent of damage is forthcoming, however, a permanent solution and repair is far beyond the city’s financial ability and expertise.”
He also added that in the event of another similar storm, the range of the emergency could escalate.
Because the road is outside of the city limits, it is unusual for the city to make such a declaration, but access to the area is critical to the city because the city has a sewage treatment facility located at Lowell Point. The city also provides power to the Lowell Point community and needs to be able to access lines and facilities in the area.
New hazards along the road should be reported to the Public Works Department during normal work hours at 224-4058, and after hours to police dispatch at 224-4022.