This Week in Alaska Business History February 4, 2001

PHOTO/Rob Stapleton/AJOC
Editor’s note: "This Week in Alaska Business History" revisits events that shaped our past.

"Those who cannot

remember the past are

condemned to repeat it."

-- George Santayana, 1863-1952

20 years ago this week

Anchorage Times

Feb. 4, 1981

Mapco sees Earth Resources expansion ahead

By John Knowlton

Times Writer

The new parent company of Earth Resources of Alaska wants to expand that firm’s involvement in the development of a possible petro-chemical industry in Alaska.

But Robert Thomas, president of Mapco Inc., isn’t saying how much expansion he is looking at. In the best tradition of corporate management, he says he’s keeping all his options open.

"We’re not ruling out anything at this point," Thomas said Tuesday.

Mapco bought out the Dallas-based Earth Resources Co. in a tax-free stock exchange two months ago. Thomas is in Alaska this week on a "get acquainted, hand-shaking" visit.

Anchorage Times

Feb. 7, 1981

Arco to build 21-story tower

By John Knowlton

Times Writer

Arco Alaska Inc. said Friday it will begin construction this summer of a $30 million, 21-story office building in Anchorage. The building will be the tallest and most expensive privately owned office building in Alaska.

The company also said Friday it has purchased the multi-unit complex it currently is leasing from Anchorage real estate developers Gene and Dick Silberer. The value of the purchased complex and the 21-story tower will be between $50 million and $60 million.

Arco officials said the oil company’s present building and the new tower will be connected with a glass enclosed atrium and total nearly 800,000 square feet of office space. The new tower will consume nearly all of the block bounded by Seventh and Eighth avenues and G and H streets.

10 years ago this week

Alaska Journal of Commerce

Feb. 4, 1991

Southeast may get road access

Alaska Journal of Commerce

Southeast Alaska communities, isolated by a rugged coast, mountains and icefields have long sought access by highway to the Interior. New transportation links, bringing with them new port development and water transportation services, will allow these communities to broaden their economies, now narrowly dependent on nearby coastal resources, such as fisheries and timber, or in Juneau, state government.

Start-up of the Greens Creek Mine near Juneau, now the nation’s largest silver mine, has stimulated mineral exploration across Southeast Alaska and nearby British Columbia.

At the northern end of Southeast, Skagway and Haines have long enjoyed surface access to the Yukon Territory. Skagway is already the outlet for mines in the Yukon, and new developments in the territory will add significantly to the volume of ore being shipped through Skagway next year.

Alaska Journal of Commerce

Feb. 4, 1991

Alaska means business for Puget Sound, Portland

By Ralph Nichols

For the Journal of Commerce

When tourists from Alaska first visit the restaurants, shops and ferry terminal along the Seattle waterfront, they’re quick to notice the name of the street that passes by.

It’s called Alaska Way, for here -- almost a hundred years ago -- men and equipment stood in long lines to board steamships that would carry them north to the Klondike gold rush.

Business ties between the Pacific Northwest and Alaska have been strong ever since.

But even before the gold rush of 1897-1900, prominent businessmen in this rapidly growing city on Puget Sound had acknowledged the importance of trade with Alaska.

In April 1882, they organized the Seattle Chamber of Commerce, with a primary goal of expanding trade with Alaska.

-- Compiled by Ed Bennett.

02/03/2001 - 8:00pm