Kootéeyaa Deiyí Totem Pole Trail

In collaboration with Sealaska Heritage Institute (SHI), the Kootéeyaa Deiyí project aimed to design a totem pole trail along the existing two-mile Seawalk in Juneau, Alaska to celebrate the diversity of Alaska’s indigenous peoples. Coffman was charged with determining the locations and the installation of 13 totem poles identified in the Kootéeyaa Deiyí Concept Plan, which Coffman also helped develop with City and Borough of Juneau (CBJ) and CBJ Docks and Harbors. Structural bases for each independently carved totem pole were also designed to affix the totem poles to their destinations.

Kootéeyaa Deiyí, meaning Totem Pole Trail, honors the five major Native groups of Alaska: the Tlingit, Haida, Tsimshian, Dena’ina, and Alutiiq. Totem poles are one of the most well-known art forms of the Indigenous peoples of the Pacific Northwest. They are carved with figures that represent crests, spirits, and designs that symbolize clan origins, migrations, and significant ancestors. Totem poles are typically made of red cedar and are raised on important occasions such as marriages, the construction of a new clan house, or the transfer of historic names and titles. Each totem pole features a corresponding storyboard that identifies the clan, crests, and information related to the artwork.

Coffman Engineers is honored to partner with SHI and artists on the Kootéeyaa Deiyí Totem Pole Trail to create an entry point from the waterfront to Heritage Square in Juneau. The Kootéeyaa Deiyí Trail is a place for people to gather and to learn about and celebrate the diversity of Alaska’s Native peoples and cultures.


  • Education


  • Landscape Architecture
  • Structural Engineering
  • Project Management