By: Shannon Ballard
The biggest barge crane on the west coast is currently in Anchorage. It’s carrying ten steel piles, each 200 feet long, four feet in diameter and weighing more than 50 tons.
They’re slowly being hammered into Cook Inlet as part of the Port of Anchorage’s modernization program, which will replace deteriorating infrastructure.
“The question was asked, ‘What do you need to do to keep cargo moving across the dock for the state of Alaska for the next 75 years?’” said Lon Elledge, program manager for the Anchorage Port Modernization Program. “The Port has enough capacity for the people of Alaska. What it doesn’t have is reliable docks.”
The Port of Anchorage is spending roughly $10,000 an hour on the pile test project, with a total of $6 million budgeted.