Brown Bag Lunch Speaker Series

Identifying, Assessing, and Planning for Natural Hazards in Alaskan Communities

Wednesday, February 6, 2013
12 noon to 1:30 p.m.
Robert B. Atwood Building, 550 West 7th Avenue, Suite 1270

Presented by Laurie Cummings, Planner, HDR, Inc. and Suzanne Taylor, Planner, WH Pacific, Inc.

In 2003, a report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) brought national attention to the impacts of flooding and erosion on rural Alaskan villages. The report found that flooding and erosion affect 184 of 213 (or about 86 percent) Alaska Native villages to some extent, and that a number of villages were in imminent danger from flooding and erosion and were planning to relocate. Since the 2003 GAO report, 31 villages have been identified as imminently threatened by flooding and erosion.

The Alaska Climate Change Impact Mitigation Program (ACCIMP) is an effort by the State of Alaska to address some of the natural hazards threatening Alaska’s communities. The program provides technical assistance and funding for communities to assess and mitigate natural hazards such as erosion, flooding, storm surge and permafrost degradation.

In this brown bag session, Alaska planners Laurie Cummings (HDR, Inc.) and Suzanne Taylor (WH Pacific) will discuss the ACCIMP Hazard Impact Assessments they prepared for the communities of Atmautluak, Elim, and Nelson Lagoon. The session will address how the long term viability of these three villages is being increased through the identification and assessment of natural hazards, and by recommended next steps for addressing hazard impacts through sound planning and engineering solutions.

Please join us on Wednesday, February 6 from 12 noon to 1:30 p.m. for the next Anchorage Brown Bag Speaker Session. This session is being held during the week of the Alaska Forum on the Environment (AFE). If you are attending AFE, lunch is on your own this day, so please feel free to come next door to the Atwood Building to join us for this session! Members with AICP certification: I will be applying for CM credit for this session.

Free/validated parking is available on the 2nd and 3rd floors of the Linny Pacillo Parking Garage across the street from the Atwood Building (enter on E Street, just north of 7th Avenue). For more information, please contact the AK-APA Region 1 VP, Sally Russell Cox, at 269-4588 or


AK-APA Announces First Alaska Planning Award Winners

The Alaska Chapter of APA (AK-APA) is pleased to announce the results of its 2012 Awards Program.

Learn more about the program and the winner

Time to update the AK-APA Bylaws

The AK-APA bylaws have been modified somewhat in the last few years as we have increased the size of the Board of Directors and decided to allow Chapter-only members who do not belong to APA (national organization). The AK-APA will be reviewing the bylaws at the upcoming November board meeting and will likely recommend changes for the membership to vote on with the December ballot. Although the immediate need for revisions is to address what Board of Director seats Chapter-only members are eligible to hold, a review of the bylaws shows that many sections are outdated compared to current practices. For example, the bylaws assume that ballots will be sent out in the mail. Almost all Chapter business is conducted by e-mail these days — including balloting. The Elections section of the bylaws will be updated to reflect the use of e-mail ballots in addition to addressing the eligibility for Board seats.

If you are interested in the bylaws and potential changes, please attend the Chapter business meeting after the Alaska Planning Conference on November 13, 2012 in Anchorage. Or you can e-mail Maryellen Tuttell, AICP, at for more details.


The Alaska Chapter needs you! We are always looking for articles to send to Western Planner or to put in our newsletter. Please feel free to e-mail anyone on the Chapter Board for more information.

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