Homer Alaska - News

Story last updated at 7:46 PM on Wednesday, February 23, 2011

News in Brief

Project will match bikes, kids

Being outside, exercising and moving freely around the community are just three of the reasons bikes are good for kids.

Bikes were a big topic among a diverse group of community members who met Saturday to discuss ways to get kids outside. Nature Rocks Homer, a group that includes business owners, teachers, medical professionals, parents and others, was so excited about the two-wheeled transport that they formed Bikes Rock Homer.

"We want to see how many bikes we can get in the hands of kids and families," said Carmen Field, chairperson of Nature Rocks Homer and an educator/naturalist at the Kachemak Bay Research Reserve.

Bikes Rock Homer aims to gather unused bicycles from the community and turn them into tools for kids to use.

"We don't want people throwing away bikes," Field said.

Members of the group will house the bikes until they are tuned up for riding.

Cycle Logical has offered to piece together bikes from old ones.

The group is looking for an agency or organization that will determine who needs bikes and how the bikes should be distributed.

Bikes Rock Homer aims to distribute bicycles at the Safe Kids fair, to be held 10 a.m.-2 p.m. April 30. If the program is well-received, there could be one or two more distribution events through the year.

The public can drop off bikes at the fire hall or the Homer Bookstore. For more information, call 235-7921 or e-mail Sallie_rediske@yahoo.com.

Regents approve technical center

The University of Alaska Board of Regents has given formal project approval for a career and technical center at Kenai River Campus, Kenai Peninsula College-University Alaska Anchorage. The $14.5 million project was part of a proposition approved by statewide voters last November.

The 15,000 square-foot facility will house the process technology, industrial process instrumentation and electronics programs and occupational safety and health courses.

Plans are to include space for laboratories, multi-function high bay shop, classrooms, offices and student common. The project will free 5,000 square-feet of space in the main campus building for other growing programs on campus including nursing, paramedicine and art.

KPC Director Gary Turner expects to go before the Board of Regents in September to receive approval of the schematic design.

It is anticipated the project will go out for bid in March, with a construction contract awarded in April. Construction could begin in May, with completion in August 2013.