I grew up in Florida. Dark, chilly winter mornings don’t exist in the sunshine state. Year round mosquitoes do however, but that’s beside the point. Getting bundled up and in the saddle early has taken some getting used to, but it’s nice to know I’ll always have company. On any given morning, I’m joined on the Chester Creek Trail by fellow cyclists, dog-walkers, joggers, and of course our favorite antlered residents. Did you know Alaskans commute by bike or foot more often, per capita, than residents of any other state, according to the American Community Survey? However, when the alarm goes off and I watch the snow fall outside, I’m plagued by a thought shared occasionally by other year round bike commuters (not the Alaskan variety, of course). Should I just drive? What if the bike lanes and sidewalks are impassable?
While we have a long road ahead of us, Anchorage is making strides toward becoming a premier winter mobility city. The Municipality’s planning arm, Anchorage Metropolitan Area Transportation Solutions (AMATS), just began a new Non-Motorized Plan. Currently, the muni relies on the 1997 Trails Plan, the 2007 Pedestrian Plan, and the 2010 Bike Plan when making decisions about new infrastructure for non-motorized transportation. The updated plan will replace all three plans and take a more holistic approach to building a non-motorized network.
A major theme that I heard in my first year at the Downtown Partnership was that Anchorage residents were unclear about what exactly we did as an organization. Some folks would sing the praises of our Security Ambassadors but have no idea we organized the Tree Lighting Ceremony or they got their ice-melt delivered in the winter but had no idea that we did youth employment training in the summers. This confusion went the other way as well. We still field calls for the Fire Department and Parking Authority. What struck me then and what impresses me every day now is that there has been one person that has steadily stewarded all the things that we do (and helpfully addresses the needs that are not necessarily our role) for nearly a decade.
Ruth Quinlan is more than just the manager of our Downtown offices (and the Board President of Friends of Pets), she is the glue that has held together our organization as it has evolved through changes in leadership, different city administrations and organizational focus. She is more than the constant and the institutional knowledge. Ruth is the one, more times than I can count, that has stood in as the voice of the Anchorage Downtown Partnership. And while there was some question about what we do, there has never been a doubt of who we are.
“I knew the entire time that I was going to win, that we were going to win,” said the effusive Chemene Slay Breiner to her assembled family in the offices of Anchorage Downtown Partnership. Breinier snapped her head back and laughed. Her contagious smile caught with the rest of the room and a playful grin spread across her son’s face.
“She always says she’s going to win,” ribbed her son and U.S. Marine Corporal Jordan Slay. This lighthearted exchange is typical of the two. They have a close bond that is as evident as it is accessible. Slay was born to a military family in Fairbanks, but was raised in Anchorage. Breiner was there shuttling him and his childhood best friend Thomas McIntyre to their sports and school activities at West High. And now, with her son out-of-state following a Division II football carrier, Tommy still comes by the house and Breiner stays involved in the community.
Anchorage Downtown Partnership Staff and Maintenance Team helped to gather and pick up trash with the downtown community in East Downtown This Past week. Click here to read more about the story in ADN. East Downtown Clean Up Spurs Development
As seen on TV and Radio, view all of Anchorage Downtown Partnership Ltd.’s coverage here! Featuring Music in the Park and other great events!
August 17, 2017 — Steffi Lee, KTVA Alaska
The Downtown Improvements Committee is looking for more community involvement, Anchorage Downtown Partnership, Ltd. holds a seat on the committee. Click HERE for the full story.
August 4, 2016 — Ron Holmstrom
Check out our very own Penny Smythe discussing what Anchorage Downtown Partnership is all about – from Clean and Safe services to all of the free events hosted downtown. View the article here!
August 3, 2016 — Ammon Swenson, Alaska Public Media
We are proud of our partnership with the Anchorage Artist Co-Op! They’re dedicated to enlivening downtown through various art forms – check out this read on what its all about. View the article here!
Read more →
This fall, Anchorage Downtown Partnership, Ltd. is working to bring healthy into downtown! Anchorage has countless bike paths, hiking and running trails, and parks, right out the door. Did you know you can cross-country ski to downtown from Kincaid State Park? Or that you can bike on paved paths all the way from the hillside to downtown? Not to mention, just on the doorstep of Downtown, you can find Elderberry Park and Delaney Park Strip with soccer fields, beach volleyball and tennis courts, horseshoes, a hockey ice rink and more! The Downtown Partnership will be working this fall to highlight some of the healthy opportunities that already exist here, and hopefully uncovering new and exciting ideas for both residents and visitors alike.
Read more →
On Saturday, August 12th around 10:30am the Holy Family Cathedral in downtown Anchorage was holding Friars’ Fest, their annual end of summer celebration for parishioners and the community at large. Anchorage Downtown Partnership, Ltd. was involved by providing event equipment rentals such as tents, stages, and other needed items. Michael Horvatin, Anchorage Downtown Partnership’s Safety Supervisor walked a sandwich board over to Holy Family Cathedral as it was needed for signage for the event.
He was in the right place at the right time.
Our Downtown is made up of local businesses; it’s what makes Downtown Anchorage unique to any other city in the world. Shopping at our local, downtown stores supports the local economy and positively impacts our community. Every small business owner is willing to work with YOU, so the next time you are looking to shop, eat or play in Downtown Anchorage, make the right choice to work with them!
The WINNERS of the all-expense paid trips to Super Bowl LII and the Pro Bowl in Orlando Florida are:
Drum roll, please…
Super Bowl = Chemene Breiner
Pro Bowl = Mike Stonerock
CONGRATULATIONS!! Thank you to ALL who purchased raffle tickets. The proceeds of the raffle will benefit the Downtown Anchorage Branding Project! Let’s hear it for the winners!
Do you have an event or business special for Downtown you’d like us to help promote? Please fill out this form! It will automatically submit a request to our Marketing Department. This is applicable for requests for our social media channels or email newsletters.
Following the completion of each calendar year, Anchorage Downtown Partnership, Ltd. produces Annual Reports for our stakeholders. These Annual Reports are collected here.
Read more →