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Individual land buyers, lessees of state land, or permittees who are unable to make their payments should immediately contact the Division of Mining, Land and Water (DMLW) to discuss ways to address their financial hardship and payments due, consistent with the COVID-19 Outbreak Health Order 1: Suspension of Laws and Appendix A, or the Director's Finding concerning extensions of certain land sale contract and lease payments, or the Commissioner's Order of Extension for mining payments.

Northwest Area Plan

October 2008

On October 31, 2008 the Commissioner of the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) adopted the Northwest Area Plan (NWAP).  The plan establishes land use designations, management intent and management guidelines for 13.5 million acres of state uplands and shorelands, and 5.6 million acres of tide and submerged lands in the area from Point Lay to Saint Michael in northwest Alaska.  This plan supersedes the 1989 Northwest Area Plan.

After plan adoption in 2008 there was a request for reconsideration.  A document titled “Commissioner’s Decision on Request for Reconsideration (PDF)” explains the issues raised and the resultant changes to the plan.  Another titled “Issue Response Summary (PDF)” reflects changes made during the earlier public review stage. 

Copies of the final plan should be available for reference at local libraries.  Printed copies of the final plan can be purchased from the DNR Public Information Centers at 3700 Airport Way, Fairbanks, AK 99709 and 550 West 7th Avenue, Suite 1360, Anchorage, AK 99501.  If you would like a CD containing the final plan to be mailed to you, or for questions please contact

All below files can be viewed in Acrobat Reader 7 and above. 

Complete Plan (PDF) (15.5 MB)

Preface (PDF) (1.4 MB)

Includes: Cover / Title Page / Signature Page / Background and Acknowledgements / Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction (PDF) (245 KB)

Includes: Introduction and Background / Summary of Purpose of the Plan / Description of the Planning Area / Submerged Lands, Tidelands, Uplands and Shorelands as Described in This Plan / Update of the Original Northwest Area Plan / Planning Area / How the Plan is Organized / Why This Plan was Developed / The Mandate / What the Plan Will Do / How This Plan is Used / Public Participation in Planning Process / Process of Plan Preparation / Who Developed the Plan? / Uses and Resources Within the Planning Area / What the Plan Won't Do / Planning Period / Summary of Plan Actions / Management Intent / Land Use Designations / Management Guidelines / Classifications / Summary of Plan Implementation and Modification

Figure 1-2: Plan Area and Management Regions (PDF) (120 KB)

Chapter 2. Areawide Land Management Policies (PDF)- Complete (310 KB)
Chapter 3: Land Management Policies for Each Management Unit (PDF) - Excluding Maps (670 KB)

Introduction (PDF)
Includes: Organization of Chapter / Land Use Designations / Designations Used in This Plan / Explanation of Mineral and Coal Designations / Management Intent / Management Guidelines / Duration and Flexibility of Plan / Glossary / Plan Structure / Plan Regions / Management Units / Region Descriptions / Plan Maps / Land Status Depicted In Plan Maps / Resource Allocation Table
Lisburne Region (PDF)
Kobuk Region (PDF)
Baird Mountains Region (PDF)
Kotzebue Sound Region (PDF)
Norton Sound Region (PDF)
Northwest Seward Peninsula Region (PDF)
Southwest Seward Peninsula Region (PDF)
Navigable Rivers and Lakes (PDF)
Figure 3-1: Index Map (PDF) (310 KB)

High Resolution Maps
Low Resolution Maps

Map 1 (PDF) (25 MB)
Map 2 (PDF) (28 MB)
Map 3 (PDF) (26 MB)
Map 4 (PDF) (20 MB)
Map 5 (PDF) (16 MB)
Map 6 (PDF) (15 MB)
Map 7 (PDF) (18 MB)
Map 8 (PDF) (21 MB)
Map 9 (PDF) (26 MB)
Map 10 (PDF) (24 MB)
Map 11 (PDF) (20 MB)
Map 12 (PDF) (16 MB)

Map 1 (PDF) (920 KB)
Map 2 (PDF) (1.5 MB)
Map 3 (PDF) (1.5 MB)
Map 4 (PDF) (1.3 MB)
Map 5 (PDF) (1.2 MB)
Map 6 (PDF) (1 MB)
Map 7 (PDF) (1.1 MB)
Map 8 (PDF) (1.2 MB)
Map 9 (PDF) (1.2 MB)
Map 10 (PDF) (1.2 MB)
Map 11 (PDF) (1.2 MB)
Map 12 (PDF) (900 KB)

Chapter 4: Implementation and Recommendations (PDF) (120 KB)

Includes: Introduction / State Land Classification / Relationship of Designations to Classifications and Conversion of Plan Designations into Classifications / Classification Order / Plan Revision / Applicability of Plan Designations/Classifications / Public Trust Doctrine / Surface Leasing / Alaska Coastal Zone Management Program / Municipal Entitlement / State Land Selections / Coordination with Federal Land Management / Mineral Order / Procedures for Plan Changes

Appendices (PDF) (170 KB)

Includes: Glossary / Land Classification Order No. NC-08-001 / Index

Map of entire plan area (PDF) (8 MB)

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