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Anchorage Port project gets new dose of scrutiny #SupplyChain

English: Aerial view of the Port of Anchorage,...
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REVIEWS: Two studies, an audit and an analysis are in the works.

Anchorage Daily News

Published: January 26th, 2012 10:36 PM
Last Modified: January 26th, 2012 10:37 PM

The troubled and expensive re-do of the Port of Anchorage expansion is getting new scrutiny with four reviews, including an examination of the "design suitability" of the project and an audit of the federal agency in charge.

A city engineering advisory commission has been calling for an independent review of the project since at least 2005.

About $288 million has been spent on the expansion so far. As costs have escalated and construction problems developed, local and state politicians have become more concerned. The estimated price tag for the full expansion, which would replace the existing structure and create new berths for bigger ships, now tops $1 billion, triple the estimate in 2005.

Mayor Dan Sullivan last year proposed scaling back the project, but now he says the municipality should wait for the results of the reviews.

The port expansion is the biggest economic development project going on in Alaska, and the 50-year-old port is a critical piece of infrastructure. Most of what Alaskans eat, drink, wear and drive comes in on cargo ships that dock there.

The project stalled after the 2009 construction season when inspections revealed that....