Ice Alaska Looking to Buy Property from Railroad

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

Ice Alaska wants to buy the land it’s operated on for the last 15 years.  The non-profit ice sculpture organization sits on Alaska railroad property, and the two parties have battled over lease terms for many years. Efforts to get the railroad to give the land to the North Star Borough or swap it for similarly valued property have failed, and Ice Alaska faces a June deadline to move out. Ice Alaska Chairman Dick Brickley says the organization is offering the railroad $4 million for the 30 acre site.

Brickley says the offer is based on past railroad and borough assessments.  He says Ice Alaska’s financing plan uses $1.8 million the organization received from the legislature for a new building, plus a $2.2 million loan. Brickly says he’ll personally guarantee the loan if he has to. He says the Alaska Railroad’s real estate board plans to review the proposal.

Ice Alaska and the railroad have been at odds over the site for years.

Download Audio (MP3)