Monday, November 12, 2007

Seldovia Diorama

I ran across this article on economic development through the Alaska Rainforest Campaign web-site. As I read it, I thought of Seldovia and what the economic future holds for us here.
The article sites a study on tourism development in 2 SE AK towns. Elfin Cove developed "high end" fishing lodges, and 77q1Hoonah developed "high-volume" infrastructure to handle small cruise ships which stopped 3-4 times a week. Hoonah got a bunch of people coming through town, a boost in sales taxes and the article doesn't say it quite like this, but alot of shitty service sector jobs. These jobs provided "more disposable income" to locals. I believe we need more than disposable income. Elfin Cove got new jobs, but the employees were from outside the community and left after the season.

The article sets the situation up as a sort of either/or. With Seldovia's track record of economic and community developments maybe we can kill both options and have neither. I sure that there are quite a few people in town who prefer not to be a character in someone's diorama. But trends are here with the Treetops folks developing there high-end lodge and SVT wanting to develop what is now being sold as daily ferry. Tourism may not be the economic engine of choice, but it seems to be the only option beyond the status-quo that is offered right now.

I wonder if anybody in town has read the study. I'll try and get back to you, my ever expanding readership (Hi, Cheryl! or is that HIGH Cheryl with the meds after surgery?) And it all maybe for naught as this article points out.

1 comment:

Salt said...

Do you have a source for that study online, Mark? I'd like to read it too.