Building in the Valley

PHOTO/Ron Veltkamp/SBA

Problems at Port MacKenzie are causing the new managers of the state’s fastest growing borough to take a step back.

Four months ago the Matanuska-Susitna Borough experienced a clean sweep. It now has a new borough mayor, three new assembly members and a new borough manager who all say the honeymoon was a lot shorter than they had hoped.

The first sign of trouble came from the very place the previous administration placed the bulk of its energy: Port MacKenzie. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced in November that core samples from the port showed a lack of structural stability.

Borough Manager John Duffy said another set of samples is being analyzed by the Corps right now.

"The Corps of Engineers told us that initial samples showed the port could not withstand a moderate to large earthquake. The port was supposed to be built strong enough to handle such natural disasters and remain economically viable."

Last month the Corps told the borough that its most recent samples suggest that the port is sitting on unstable clays that may be creating a "failure in progress." The report went on to say that the Corps recommends limited use of the port until the investigative team has had a chance to complete its investigation.

12/09/2016 - 6:32pm