How are communities affected?
(every Community has their story, more to follow...)
Each year the Railroad takes millions of dollars of Federal Transit Administration grant funds away from the Municipality of Anchorage even though they are NOT a public transit and do little to benefit the public transit service of Anchorage. The federal formula grant programs were primarily designed to support public commuter transit in urban areas, which critics of the Alaska Railroad point out is not what the Alaska Railroad actually does. It simply doesn’t provide traditional commuter rail service.
The ARC regularly charges the Municipality of Anchorage many hundreds of thousands of dollars to maintain Railroad right-of-ways, these right-of-ways which the Railroad claims to own, yet charges Anchorage to maintain them. Anchorage taxpayers fund right of way clearing and other Railroad maintenance concerns within the Municipality while receiving little to no benefit.
In 2015 the ARC denied access to public recreational trails in continuous use for more than 15 years at Fish Creek estuary in Anchorage.