Results 1 to 14 of 14

Thread: Building Permit Required?

  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Santa Maria, CA soon to be Alaska
    Posts
    64

    Default Building Permit Required?

    Hello all,

    I am researching land in the Glennallen area and am wondering if a building permit is required? The land I am looking at is within an "unorganized borough".

    Thanks,
    James

  2. #2
    Member Michael's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Anchorage / Glennallen
    Posts
    162

    Default

    No building permit required, but if you want to finance or sell later with bank financing it's not a bad idea to get construction inspections during construction.

  3. #3
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Santa Maria, CA soon to be Alaska
    Posts
    64

    Default

    Thanks Michael...I am planning on paying cash as I go so I can stay out of debt. I am in construction and have been pouring over a ton of info about building in Alaska.

    I have read that there is permafrost in the Glennallen area. Is there anyway to tell exacty where it is? I am planning a trip in May to go see the property so how can I tell if there is permafrost. Will I be able to identify it by digging down and see frozen land.....sorry I sound so ignorant I just want to be prepared for what ever I find.

    Thanks again.

  4. #4
    Member ret25yo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Unit 13
    Posts
    1,471

    Default

    here ya go... always best to see the land first..

    http://efotg.nrcs.usda.gov/reference...afrost8_02.pdf

    If you cant stand behind the troops in Iraq.. Feel free to stand in front of them.

  5. #5
    Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    590

    Default

    Be there at the warmest part of the year and dig with a post hole digger. Get as far down as you can. You should be ok if you can get below 4-5'. There is only one rule you need to remember when building in the Arctic. "When it is frozen, keep it frozen."

  6. #6
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Santa Maria, CA soon to be Alaska
    Posts
    64

    Default

    Thanks 25retyo for the map that really helps.

    Qkayak...can you explain why it would be ok to be able to dig down 4-5'. Can you tell me what type of foundation is best for the Glennallen area or what is the most common type? It appears that I could use a concrete pile wrapped in plastic and back filled with gravel.

    I am planning on a 24'x24' cabin with loft, 3' above the ground built with SIPs.

    Any comments would be helpful.

    Thanks,
    James

  7. #7
    Member Michael's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Anchorage / Glennallen
    Posts
    162

    Default

    We built ours 28x44 with SIP panels. We cleared the building site of black spruce to ground level then layed down typar over the 'undisturbed' tundra and built an 18" pad. We built 4x4 x 10" pads for our foundation posts and filled in around them with additional gravel.

    The ground will most likely be mostly frozen in May, so a rock solid determination of permafrost may be difficult.

    PM when you get to the States and we'll show you what we've got.

    Sail on,
    Fair winds,

  8. #8
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Santa Maria, CA soon to be Alaska
    Posts
    64

    Default

    Thanks Michael...that would be of great help! The other option I am looking at is the pad foundation like yours.

  9. #9
    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    5,594

    Default

    I'd suggest visiting prospective building sites in the winter and summer. You'd be amazed at the areas that can be subject to flooding in the winter from overflow, or those chinooks that dump rain in the middle of winter with the water looking for a place to go with frozen ground and snow everywhere.

    Vegitation gives a pretty clue as to what type of soil you are on. Stunted black spruce grow in swampy and permafrost areas.

  10. #10
    Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    590

    Default Foundation

    Quote Originally Posted by JamesM View Post
    Thanks 25retyo for the map that really helps.

    Qkayak...can you explain why it would be ok to be able to dig down 4-5'. Can you tell me what type of foundation is best for the Glennallen area or what is the most common type? It appears that I could use a concrete pile wrapped in plastic and back filled with gravel.

    I am planning on a 24'x24' cabin with loft, 3' above the ground built with SIPs.

    Any comments would be helpful.

    Thanks,
    James

    If you can get down 4-5 ft. easily with a post hole digger, that probably means you don't have permafrost or the depth of the permafrost is deeper. If it is deeper it will won't be a problem if you insulate the "disturbed" ground. Your idea of piled wrapped in plastic and filled with gravel will work if you do 2 things. You need to ensure that water does not shed to the posts. Otherwise, jacking is going to occur when the water freezes. Secondly you should insulate the ground at the top of the post to either keep the ground frozen or to keep from freezing. Like I said before, if frozen keep it frozen, if thawed keep it thawed. It takes a fare amount of frost depth to jack a pile depending on the weight you have on it.

  11. #11
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Santa Maria, CA soon to be Alaska
    Posts
    64

    Default

    Paul...I can only get there in the fall/summer of this year. I know there are other cabins, homes in the area so I hope that is an indicater of buildability. The land description says it is generaly flat with slight elevation change. The soil is Klawasi peat mixed with Gakona silt. The primary vegetation is blace spruce.

    qkayak...I was reading today about insulating the ground like you are talking about. Seems that the saying "if frozen keep it frozen, if thawed keep it thawed" is a golden rule to building there. I have seen pics of homes destroyed due to poor foundation planning so i really want to be very sure on this. I want to build whatever foundation is best for the area.

    You said the land might still be frozen in May...so when would the best time to come up to see the land in its warmest state? July or August I would think?

    Just want to say thanks to everyone for the comments...keep them coming

  12. #12
    Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    951

    Default

    Pretty much everywhere is going to have frozen ground in May, especially Glennallen. Late August/early Sept is going to be the time of maximum thaw and if you are evaluating permafrost that would be the time to do it.

    Keep in mind it can vary in a short distance. South side of a hill may not have it, whereas the north side will. Even if you are not on permafrost, peat that freezes and thaws seasonally is going to be the worst. Here in Anchortown they spend a lot of money digging out 8' of peat to replace it with gravel trucked in from Palmer.

  13. #13
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Santa Maria, CA soon to be Alaska
    Posts
    64

    Default

    Thanks Nrick that what I needed to know. I am looking forward to going up there and look around. I beleive there is a gravel pit near Copperville, just south of where i am looking. The land I am looking at is 1/4 to 1/2 mile off the Richardson highway. I am planning to do all the work myself so I have researched some of the places I can get raw materials.

  14. #14
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    1

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JamesM View Post
    Hello all,

    I am researching land in the Glennallen area and am wondering if a building permit is required? The land I am looking at is within an "unorganized borough".

    Thanks,
    James
    James how did the foundation turn out. I am also going to build in Glennallen and the info would be a big help.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •