Mayor Dave Bronson announced the creation of a task force of business, civic, and community leaders who will help devise strategies and ideas to make Anchorage a more attractive place for tourists to visit, businesses to invest, and residents to live.
The 11-member “Project Anchorage,” task force will play a critical role in developing policy recommendations that will help enhance Anchorage’s economy and livability in the years to come, his office said.
“The creation of this taskforce – Project Anchorage – comes at a critical point in Anchorage’s history. We can’t go down the path of being a declining oil-boom town,” Bronson said. “I’m compelled to help create an Anchorage that is thriving, dynamic, and growing – a place where our children want to live when they get older. We must implement forward thinking and positive polices that attract talent, increase business investment, and enhance the quality of life for our residents. I’ve charged this taskforce to think big and put all options on the table. We want the 2020s to be Anchorage’s decade!”
The task force will be comprised of the following organizations and entities:
- Anchorage Chamber of Commerce
- Anchorage Downtown Partnership
- Anchorage Economic Development Corporation
- Visit Anchorage
- Anchorage Parks Foundation
- Alaska Hospitality Retailers
- A member of the Assembly
- Eklutna Inc.
- Girdwood Chamber of Commerce
- Chugiak-Eagle River Chamber of Commerce
- Anchorage Community Development Authority
The task force will rely on the work done by consultant Roger Brooks, who conducted an in-depth survey of Anchorage from the perspective of an investor, visitor, and citizen. AEDC and other organizations brought Mr. Brooks to Anchorage, to help inform leaders on how to make our city, and downtown in particular, a better place for visitors, businesses, and residents.
“Downtown has incredible potential to be a vibrant, connected hub of activity that draws tourists and future residents,” said Assembly Member Daniel Volland. “As an Assembly Member and downtown business owner, I’m excited to work with the Mayor and other stakeholders on envisioning a downtown experience that befits our northern city of the future.”
“As a long-time Anchorage resident and business professional, I look forward to contributing to the taskforce by creating recommendations to improve our community,” said Bruce Bustamante, President & CEO, Anchorage Chamber of Commerce. “Now is the time to take action with both short-term and long-term initiatives to improve transportation, connect trails and create wayfinding. I am pleased to be invited and to involve the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce as this effort is critically important to the future of our community.”
“Our city’s ability to generate new investment is directly dependent on our capacity to attract and retain a growing and skilled workforce,” said Bill Popp, CEO, Anchorage Economic Development Corporation. “As one of the lead partners that brought Mr. Brooks to Anchorage to assess our city’s approachability to workforce, visitors, and investors AEDC is excited to be a part of this task force the Mayor has formed that will lead the effort to implement the recommendations presented. This effort will be an important part of our success as a city in the coming years that will make our city an even better place to live, work, and play.
“I want to thank the members of the taskforce for helping our city move forward into a bright future,” Bronson said.
Mayor Bronson has requested the taskforce present recommendations and policy initiatives by the end of 2022, to provide time for evaluation and implementation prior to the 2023 building and tourism season.