The city of Sitka is raising the bar for closing Lincoln Street.

Since the beginning of the summer cruise season, the city has been closing the street to traffic on days when 3,000 or more cruise passengers are in town. Beginning next week, the threshold will increase to 4,000. 

At the Sitka Assembly meeting on Tuesday (6-14-22), municipal administrator John Leach said one reason for the change was to accommodate downtown banks. 

“We talked a lot about the banks. That was a big issue with the drive-throughs. And we didn’t feel, at this point, that compressing the hours was going to help the banks much at all. And compressing the morning hours was tough, because we’d still have to clear all the cars off the street,” Leach said. “So changing that threshold…removes seven planned closures between next week and the end of the season.”   

Leach said that meant Lincoln Street would remain open every Friday and Saturday through the months of July and August. He added that if the change goes smoothly, the city may consider raising the threshold again later in the summer.