Public Hearing Coming Up on Gilpin Heights Replat

The Division of Mining, Land, and Water, Survey Section, will conduct a public hearing on a replat of property near Fort Davis with the intention of facilitating the proposed Gilpin Heights Subdivision. William Gilpin of Nome has submitted a petition to eliminate a boundary common to two placer claims which are included in the plan for the subdivision. The boundary divides seven lots. By removing the boundary much paperwork is eliminated. The public hearing will be held at 11:00 A.M. on Aug. 5, 2020 via teleconference.
 
William Gilpin joined his father in Nome back in 2007, coming from Southern California, and found work as an electrician at the Rock Creek Mine. He worked there for two and a half years.  His father was a diesel mechanic and bought the property in 1998. The elder Gilpin became ill with Alzheimer’s disease and William quit work to look after him. “I couldn’t travel any more so we started selling gravel,” said Gilpin. “I was able to survive with my dad having Alzheimer’s and me not being able to work.” Now with an eye to retirement he’s preparing to sell lots in the subdivision he named in honor of his father. “Now days it’s challenging to say the least and there’s not a lot of economic progress here in town. To make a long story short, my line of thought was if there was no industry maybe I could drive an industry by putting in roads, maybe building a few houses.” He’d like to find a couple of young people, twenty somethings, who want to find their way in the trades and make a living. Building houses would help out the community. Being able to offer housing at a reasonable price is one of Gilpin’s objectives. ““These days these twenty somethings are renting at $1700 a month,” said Gilpin. It’s tough for them to get into their own home. “So I thought if maybe I could build some starter homes and maybe offer them at a couple hundred thousand I could give these kids a chance to get into their own homes.”
 
The property sits on a very large deposit of rock. Bedrock is 142 feet below the gravel pile. This makes septic tanks very practical, among other things. Digging a well would run around $20,000 but there’s no guarantee that well would find fresh water. “Most people along the Beam Road haul water,” said Gilpin. “There’s very few deep wells even though they’re accessible. It’s the price that drives them out. “As far as power goes, personally I’m going to go solar. For about $15,000 in materials I can put in a nice solar system with a small backup generator just to ease the days when you don’t have a lot of solar production.”
 
The Gilpin Heights development includes 18 lots and is located at about the five and a half mile point on the Council Highway. “It’s completely in the development stage,” says Gilpin. He’s putting in a frontage road along the Council Highway. There will be two access points only from the highway. This will enable the truckers using the highway to anticipate congestion more easily.
Asked to describe the purpose of eliminating the boundary Gilpin replied “It is to marry those two parcels into a more efficient land block where it’s more efficient for me to break it into lots.”
The original survey of the property was done in 1914 for the Nome Gold Dredging Association.
The property consists of the Vermont and New Hampshire Placer Claims of US Mineral Survey No. 1131. They are located near Nome in Sections 1 & 2, Township 12 South, Range 33 West, Kateel Meridian. The public hearing will be held at 11:00 A.M. on August 5, 2020 via teleconference. Persons wanting to comment on the proposed action must submit their comments in writing. Correspondence must be addressed to George Horton, DML&W, 550 W. 7th Ave., Suite 650, Anchorage, AK 99501, and received by 5:00pm, August 3, 2020 to ensure consideration. Horton’s contact information is George Horton at (907) 269-8610 or george.horton@alaska.gov.
Note by the Editor: A different version of this story ran in the paper edition of the Nome Nugget.

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