Harbor Notes 2024

Vessels at Thomsen Harbor, March 2023

The Sitka Harbor Dept. did not receive federal “Port Infrastructure Development Program” (PDIP) grant funding in 2023, so “We are re-applying again in 2024,” says Harbormaster Stan Eliason. Grant results will not be known until fall, 2024.

These funds would be used to upgrade electrical systems at Eliason Harbor. “The pilings have 22 years of life left,” said Eliason, who would like to get “at least 20 years of life from the electrical system. In a perfect world, the pilings, electrical and everything else would have the same service life expectancy.”

Eliason Harbor was built 28 years ago, to have a 30-year lifespan. “It makes sense to replace everything at once.”

The department is also planning on replacing the fish cleaning floats at Sealing Cove, in a joint effort with ADF&G.

Other priorities for 2024 include major repairs for the Fisherman’s Work Float. “The State of Alaska DOT awarded us a partial grant.” Eliason is shooting for September to start the project.

Regarding the 2024 expected Cruise Ship Season, 75 visits are anticipated to the tender docks – ships are planned from April 8 through October though, Eliason notes, with the customary rough weather in the fall, there may be cancellations.

The Harbor Website is “something we always do our best to update,” and this is done in-house. Visit https://www.cityofsitka.com/departments/Harbors.

The Gary Paxton Industrial Park Dock schedule is now on the website, “so plan your use accordingly,” says Eliason. This is a multi-purpose, multi-use dock for loading and off-loading.

New fees for Moorage and Transient Vessels go into effect on July 1st, 2024.

Eliason shared one interesting piece of “Harbor Trivia”:  There are about 11 1/2 miles of floating infrastructure – if the finger floats, marginal and pier floats were lined up end-to-end, it would come to about 11 1/2 miles (as compared with 14 miles of Sitka’s road system).

To the public, the Sitka Harbor Dept. would like to say, “We appreciate working with everyone – all harbor users – recreational, commercial, charter, visiting, etc. – everyone!”