Working weather

Orange cones, working equipment and flaggers are usually a sign of a busy Alaska summer, but this year’s unwinter-like weather has extended the construction season. Currently, a crew of Utility Technologies employees are making the most of the mild temperatures, stringing 26,000 feet of pipe on the Homer Spit. In the photo at left, UT employees Ellis Smith, left, and Matthew Ramick, lead welder, weld sections of the Spit pipeline. 

Enstar Natural Gas was committed to working through the winter even under normal circumstances, but the milder weather has allowed them to move more quickly than anticipated, said Homer Public Works Director Carey Meyer. Work also has continued on the Spit Trail expansion, with Peninsula Paving the low bidder on that project. 

“I didn’t expect to see much happening on the Spit, whether the trail or the gas line, but the weather has allowed us to do some additional preparation for trail paving and we’ve got some overlooks that have been constructed,” said Meyer. 

Aware not everyone appreciates the warmer temperatures and lack of snow and ice, Meyer said it has given the city an opportunity to get a headstart that should make it possible to put the gas line and Spit Trail to use “much more quickly than originally anticipated.”