BLM and the Campbell Tract
Q: What does the BLM do at Campbell Tract?
A: The Campbell Tract is an administrative site for the BLM Anchorage Field Office. The Tract houses adminstrative offices, a warehouse, shops, communication sites, an active airstrip and heliport, and the Campbell Creek Science Center. The airstrip is available for use in emergencies and for agency use. The open space at Campbell Tract is managed as an outdoor classroom for the Science Center and for non-motorized recreation.
Q: What land does the Anchorage Field Office manage from Campbell Tract?
A: The Anchorage Field Office is responsible for managing 17 million acres of surface estate in southcentral and southwestern Alaska, plus 500,000 acres in southeast Alaska. more>>
Q: Who owns Campbell Tract?
A: Campbell Tract is federal public land administered by the U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management.
Q: What authorizes the BLM to use Campbell Tract?
A: The Secretary of the Interior has withdrawn the land on Campbell Tract for use by the BLM as an administrative site. Under the Federal Land Policy and Management Act, land can be withdrawn for up to 20 years. The BLM's withdrawal on the Campbell Tract expires in February 2022.
Q: What exactly is a withdrawal?
A: A withdrawal withholds federal land from settlement, sale, location or entry under some or all of the general land laws. A withdrawal reserves the land for federal government use. Land may be withdrawn by the President, Congress, or the Secretary of Interior. Most withdrawals are made by the Secretary of Interior.
Q: What uses are allowed on administrative site withdrawals?
A: There are no established or required uses of administrative site withdrawals. The use of an administrative site is generally at the discretion of the agency that manages the land.
Q: Are there other withdrawals in the Anchorage area?
A: There are many land withdrawals across Alaska and in the Anchorage area. Elmendorf Air Force Base and Fort Richardson were withdrawn for military purposes. Chugach National Forest was withdrawn by President Theodore Roosevelt for forest management purposes.
Q: Does the BLM allow public use of the lands at Campbell Tract?
A: The public may use the Tract for non-motorized recreational use, as long as it is compatible with the BLM's use of the Tract as an administrative site. BLM and the Municipality of Anchorage signed a cooperative management agreement in 1987 designed to provide the public with a seamless recreational experience on Campbell Tract and the Municipality's adjacent Far North Bicentennial Park.
Q: Are there rules the public should know about when visiting Campbell Tract?
A: Yes. In 1998 the BLM published a list of Special Rules for Campbell Tract designed to keep trail users safe and protect the natural resources of the Tract. The following activities are prohibited on Campbell Tract: use of motor vehicles except on designated roads; use of firearms, air guns, paint guns, archery equipment, traps or snares; dogs and domesticated animals not on a leash; building fires; camping; consumption of alcohol; use or possession of fireworks; building structures or shelters; and constructing trails.
Q: Is the airstrip operational?
A: The airstrip is used for federal operations by the BLM and other agencies. The airstrip and administrative facilities also serve as an emergency deployment location for the Alaska Disaster Medical Assistance Team and DOI Emergency Response Teams.
Q: Why was the Campbell Creek Science Center built?
A: A group of educators submitted a proposal to the BLM in 1987 to build an environmental education center. That request was incorporated into the BLM's 1988 Campbell Tract Management Plan. The center was completed in 1996 through add-on funding provided by Senator Ted Stevens.
Q: How does the Science Center fit into the BLM's mission?
A: Education is more effective than regulations and environmental remediation in managing public lands. The BLM believes it's more cost effective to educate people about the appropriate use of resources on public lands than it is to restore land after it has been misused.
Q: How is the Science Center used?
A: The primary use is to educate children and adults about science and the natural resources of Alaska. Secondary use is for training and meetings of agencies, businesses, or groups whose focus is science education or natural resource management.
Q: Is the Science Center open to the public?
A: Yes, but the facility is not a visitor center. Most use is by groups attending scheduled programs at the center. The Campbell Tract is the outdoor classroom for the Science Center and is also available for use as provided in the 1988 management plan.
Q: How can I let the BLM know what I think about Campbell Tract?
A: You can comment on-line or send the BLM your written comments at any time. Contact the BLM by telephone at 267-1246 and let us know what you think. Or drop by our offices at 4700 BLM Road (68th Avenue and Elmore Road) during regular business hours. Your comments are important and we want to hear them!