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City of Anchorage
Borough, City
Flag
Seal
Official name: Municipality of Anchorage
Motto: Big Wild Life
Nickname: The City of Lights and Flowers
Country  United States
State  Alaska
Elevation 102 ft (31 m)
Coordinates 61°13′6″N 149°53′57″W / 61.21833°N 149.89917°W / 61.21833; -149.89917
Area 1,961.1 sq mi (5,079 km2)
 - land 1,697.2 sq mi (4,396 km2)
 - water 263.9 sq mi (683 km2)
Population 279,243 (2008) [1]
 - metro 359,180 [4]
Density 164.2 /sq mi (63 /km2)
Founded 1914
 - Incorporated November 23, 1920
Mayor Dan Sullivan
Timezone AKST (UTC-9)
 - summer (DST) AKDT (UTC-8)
ZIP code 99501–99524, 99530
Area code 907
FIPS code 02-03000
GNIS feature ID 1398242
Location of Anchorage within Alaska
Website: www.muni.org

Anchorage (officially called the Municipality of Anchorage [MOA]) is a consolidated city-borough in the U.S. state of Alaska. With an estimated 279,243 municipal residents in 2008[1] (359,180 residents within the Metropolitan Statistical Area),[2] it is Alaska's largest city and constitutes more than 40 percent of the state's total population; only New York has a higher percentage of residents who live in the state's largest city. Anchorage has been named All-America City four times, in 1956, 1965, 1984/85, and 2002, by the National Civic League.[3] It has also been named by Kiplinger as the most tax friendly city in the United States.[4]

Contents

History

The Good Friday or "Great Alaska" Earthquake on March 27, 1964. View of Fourth Avenue

Anchorage, unlike every other large town in Alaska south of the Brooks Range, was neither a fishing nor mining camp. The area within tens of miles of Anchorage is barren of significant economic metal minerals; there is no fishing fleet operating out of Anchorage. The city grew from its happenstance choice as the site, in 1914, of a railroad construction port for the Alaska Railroad. The railroad was built between 1915 and 1923. Ship Creek Landing, where the railroad headquarters was located, quickly became a tent city; Anchorage was incorporated on November 23, 1920. The city's economy in the 1920s centered around the railroad. Between the 1930s and the 1950s, the city experienced massive growth as air transportation and the military became increasingly important. Merrill Field opened in 1930, and Anchorage International Airport opened in 1951. Elmendorf Air Force Base and Fort Richardson were constructed in the 1940s.

On March 27, 1964, Anchorage was hit by the magnitude 9.2 Good Friday Earthquake, which killed 115 Alaskans and caused $1.8 billion in damage (2007 U.S. dollars). The earth-shaking event lasted nearly five minutes; most structures that failed remained intact the first few minutes, then failed with repeated flexing. It was the second largest earthquake in the recorded history of the world. Rebuilding dominated the city in the mid 1960s.

In 1968, oil was discovered in Prudhoe Bay, and the resulting oil boom spurred further growth in Anchorage. In 1975, the City of Anchorage and the Greater Anchorage Area Borough (which includes Eagle River, Girdwood, Glen Alps, and several other communities) merged into the geographically larger Municipality of Anchorage. The city continued to grow in the 1980s, and capital projects and an aggressive beautification campaign took place.

Geography

Anchorage and Cook Inlet with the Chugach Mountains to the east.

Anchorage is located in South Central Alaska. It lies slightly farther north than Oslo, Stockholm, Helsinki and St. Petersburg, but not as far north as Reykjavik or Murmansk. It is northeast of the Alaska Peninsula, Kodiak Island, and Cook Inlet, due north of the Kenai Peninsula, northwest of Prince William Sound and Alaska Panhandle, and nearly due south of Mount McKinley/Denali. The city is on a strip of coastal lowland and extends up the lower alpine slopes of the Chugach Mountains. To the south is Turnagain Arm, a fjord that has some of the world's highest tides. Knik Arm, another tidal inlet, lies to the west and north. The Chugach Mountains on the east form a boundary to development, but not to the city limits, which encompass part of the wild alpine territory of Chugach State Park. The city's seacoast consists mostly of treacherous mudflats. Newcomers and tourists are warned not to walk in this area because of extreme tidal changes and the very fine glacial silt. Unwary victims have walked onto the solid seeming silt revealed when the tide is out and have become stuck in the mud. The two recorded instances of this occurred in 1961 and 1988.[5] Contrary to popular belief, these unfortunate people usually die of hypothermia due to the very cold water before they drown.[citation needed]

Climate

Anchorage has a subarctic climate (the Köppen climate classification is Dfc) but with strong maritime influences that moderate temperatures. Average daytime summer temperatures range from approximately 55 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit (13 to 26 degrees Celsius); average daytime winter temperatures are about 5 to 30 degrees (−15 to −1 degrees Celsius). Anchorage has a frost-free growing season that averages slightly over 100 days.

Average January low and high temperatures at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport (PANC) are 9 °F/22 °F (−13 °C/-5 °C) with an average winter snowfall of 70.60 inches (179.3 cm). The 1954–1955 winter had 132.8 inches (337.3 cm), which made it the snowiest winter on record. The coldest temperature ever recorded at the original weather station located at Merrill Field on the East end of 5th Avenue was −38 °F (−38.8 °C) on February 3, 1947.

Anchorage during 0oF weather

Summers are typically mild (although cool compared to the contiguous US and even interior Alaska), and it can rain frequently. Average July low and high temperatures are 52 °F/66 °F (11 °C/19 °C) and the hottest reading ever recorded was 92 °F (33.3 °C) on June 25, 1953. The average annual precipitation at the airport is 16.07 inches (408 mm). Anchorage's latitude causes summer days to be very long and winter daylight hours to be very short. The city is often cloudy during the winter, which decreases the amount of sunlight experienced by residents.[6]

Downtown in winter.

Owing to its proximity to active volcanoes, ash hazards are a significant, though infrequent, occurrence. The most recent notable volcanic activiy centered around the multiple eruptions of Mt.Redoubt during March–April 2009, resulting in a 25,000-foot (7,600 m) high ash cloud as well as ash accumulation throughout the Cook Inlet region. Previously, the most active recent event was an August 1992 eruption of Mount Spurr, which is located 78 miles (126 km) west of the city.[7] The eruption deposited about 3 mm (0.1 in) of volcanic ash on the city. The clean-up of ash resulted in excessive demands for water and caused major problems for the Anchorage Water and Wastewater Utility.

Climate data for Anchorage, Alaska
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 56
(13)
57
(14)
56
(13)
72
(22)
82
(28)
92
(33)
84
(29)
85
(29)
73
(23)
64
(18)
62
(17)
53
(12)
92
(33)
Average high °F (°C) 22
(-5.6)
26
(-3.3)
34
(1.1)
44
(6.7)
55
(12.8)
62
(16.7)
65
(18.3)
63
(17.2)
55
(12.8)
40
(4.4)
28
(-2.2)
24
(-4.4)
43
(6.1)
Average low °F (°C) 9
(-12.8)
12
(-11.1)
18
(-7.8)
29
(-1.7)
39
(3.9)
47
(8.3)
52
(11.1)
49
(9.4)
41
(5)
28
(-2.2)
16
(-8.9)
11
(-11.7)
29
(-1.7)
Record low °F (°C) -35
(-37)
-38
(-39)
-24
(-31)
-15
(-26)
1
(-17)
29
(-2)
34
(1)
31
(-1)
19
(-7)
-6
(-21)
-21
(-29)
-36
(-38)
-38
(-39)
Rainfall inches (mm) 0.68
(17.3)
0.74
(18.8)
0.65
(16.5)
0.52
(13.2)
0.70
(17.8)
1.06
(26.9)
1.70
(43.2)
2.93
(74.4)
2.87
(72.9)
2.09
(53.1)
1.09
(27.7)
1.05
(26.7)
16.08
(408.4)
Snowfall inches (mm) 10.7
(271.8)
11.5
(292.1)
9.0
(228.6)
4.8
(121.9)
0.4
(10.2)
0.0
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.3
(7.6)
7.3
(185.4)
10.7
(271.8)
14.8
(375.9)
69.5
(1,765.3)
% Humidity 59.5 73.5 68.5 61.5 58.0 58.0 64.0 70.0 72.0 71.0 72.0 75.5 74.5
Source: http://www.weather.com/outlook/travel/businesstraveler/wxclimatology/monthly/USAK0012 October 7, 2009
Source #2: http://www.climate-zone.com/climate/united-states/alaska/anchorage/ February 15, 2010

Wildlife

A moose in a yard.

A diverse wildlife population exists in urban Anchorage and the surrounding area. Approximately 250 black bears and 60 grizzly bears live in the area. Bears are regularly sighted within the city. Moose are a common sight. In the Anchorage Bowl, there is a summer population of approximately 250 moose, increasing to as many as 1000 during the winter. They are a hazard to drivers, with over 100 moose killed by cars each year. Two people have been stomped to death by moose in recent years in Anchorage. Cross-country skiers and dog mushers using city trails have been charged by moose on numerous occasions; the Alaska Dept of Fish and Game has to destroy some individual aggressive moose in the city every year. Dall sheep can be commonly sighted along the Seward Highway between Anchorage and Girdwood. Approximately 30 wolves live in the Anchorage area, in 2007 several dogs were killed by wolves while on walks with their owners.[8][9] There are also beaver dams in local creeks, and it is common to see fox and kits in parking lots close to wooded areas in the spring. Along the Seward Highway headed toward Kenai, there are common sightings of whales in the Turnagain Arm.

Demographics

2003 Iditarod start in downtown Anchorage.

As of the 2005–2007 American Community Survey conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau, White Americans made up 69.8% of Anchorage's population; of which 66.4% were non-Hispanic whites. Blacks or African Americans made up 6.3% of Anchorage's population; of which 6.1% were non-Hispanic blacks. American Indians and Alaska Natives made up 5.5% of the city's population; of which 5.3% were non-Hispanic. Asian Americans made up 6.1% of the city's population; of which 6.0% were non-Hispanic. Pacific Islander Americans made up 1.0% of the city's population. Individuals from some other race made up 2.7% of the city's population; of which 0.1% were non-Hispanic. Individuals from two or more races made up 8.5% of the city's population; of which 7.4% were non-Hispanic. In addition, Hispanics and Latinos made up 7.7% of Anchorage's population.[10][11]

As of the 2000 census, there were 260,283 people, 94,822 households and 64,099 families residing in the municipality. The population density was 59.2/km² (153.4/sq mi). There were 100,368 housing units at an average density of 59.1/sq mi (22.8/km²). The racial makeup of the municipality was 72.23% White, 5.84% African American, 7.28% Native American, 5.55% Asian, 0.93% Pacific Islander, 2.19% from other races, and 5.98% from two or more races. 5.69% were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 4.00% reported speaking Spanish at home, while 1.49% speak Tagalog and 1.44% Korean.[12]

Historical populations
Census Pop.  %±
1920 1,856
1930 2,277 22.7%
1940 3,495 53.5%
1950 11,254 222.0%
1960 44,237 293.1%
1970 48,081 8.7%
1980 174,431 262.8%
1990 226,338 29.8%
2000 260,283 15.0%
Est. 2008 279,243 7.3%
source:[1][13]

There were 94,822 households out of which 38.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.1% were married couples living together, 11.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.4% were non-families. 23.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 3.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.67 and the average family size was 3.19.

In the municipality the population was spread out with 29.1% under the age of 18, 9.6% from 18 to 24, 33.9% from 25 to 44, 21.9% from 45 to 64, and 5.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females there were 101.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 102.4 males.

The median income for a household in the municipality was $55,546, and the median income for a family was $63,682. Males had a median income of $41,267 versus $31,747 for females. The per capita income for the municipality was $25,287. About 5.1% of families and 7.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.8% of those under the age of 18 and 6.4% of those 65 and older.

As of September 7, 2006, 94 languages were spoken by students in the Anchorage School District.[14]

Economy

Sister cities[15]
Japan Chitose, Japan
Australia Darwin, Australia
People's Republic of China Harbin, PRC
South Korea Incheon, South Korea
Russia Magadan, Russia
Norway Tromsø, Norway
United Kingdom Whitby, United Kingdom

Anchorage's largest economic sectors include transportation, military, local and federal government, tourism, and resource extraction. Large portions of the local economy depend on Anchorage's geographical location and surrounding natural resources. Anchorage's economy traditionally has seen steady growth, while not quite as rapid as the rest of the country; it also does not experience as much pain during economic downturns. Widespread housing foreclosures seen around the country during 2007 and 2008 were generally nowhere near as severe.[citation needed]

The Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport is the world's third busiest airport by cargo traffic, surpassed only by Memphis and Hong Kong. This traffic is strongly linked to Anchorage's location along "great circle" routes between Asia and the lower 48 states. In addition, the airport has an abundant supply of jet fuel which is refined at refineries in North Pole, Alaska, or Kenai, Alaska. This jet fuel is transported to the Port of Anchorage either by rail or by pipeline to the airport. Either through direct or indirect employment the airport employs around ten percent of the city's workforce.[citation needed]

The Port of Anchorage receives 95% of all goods entering the state. Ships from Totem Ocean Trailer Express (TOTE) and Horizon Lines arrive twice weekly from the Port of Tacoma in Washington. Along with handling these activities the port is a storage facility for jet fuel for Elmendorf Air Force Base as well as the Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport. In 2004 the Port of Anchorage Intermodal Expansion Project was initiated which, when completed in 2014, will approximately double the size of the port, stimulating the local construction economy as well as providing a more efficient means of moving freight for future economic activities.[citation needed]

The United States Military has two main bases, Elmendorf Air Force Base and Fort Richardson as well as the Kulis Air National Guard Base in Anchorage. These three bases employ approximately 8,500 people and military personnel and their families comprise ten percent of the local population. During the Cold War, Elmendorf became an increasingly important base due to its proximity to the Soviet Union. Since the September 11, 2001 attacks, Task Force 1–501 housed at Fort Richardson was upgraded into an airborne brigade to become the primary strategic response force in th Pacific Theater.[citation needed] As of 2010, Elmendorf will be the consolidated military base in Anchorage. Fort Richardson will consolidate with Elmendorf for basic operations (although much of the actual Army units will remain); the Air National Guard units will eventually move to Elmendorf.

While Juneau is the official state capital of Alaska, there are actually more state employees who reside in the Anchorage area. Around 6,800 state employees work in Anchorage compared to around 3,800 in Juneau. Federal government workers also include around 10,000, many related to federal lands management.[citation needed]

Many tourists are drawn to Alaska every year and Anchorage is commonly the first initial stop for most travelers. From Anchorage people can easily head south to popular fishing locations on the Kenai Peninsula or north to locations such as Denali National Park and Fairbanks. The economic impact of tourism and conventions in Anchorage totals approximately $150 million annually.[citation needed]

The resource sector, mainly petroleum, is arguably Anchorage's most visible industry, with many high rises bearing the logos of large multinationals such as BP and ConocoPhillips. While field operations are centered on the Alaska North Slope and in more southern areas around Cook Inlet, the majority of offices and administration are found in Anchorage. Around one sixth of jobs state-wide are related to this industry.[citation needed]

ConocoPhillips Alaska, a subsidiary of ConocoPhillips, has its headquarters in Ancorage.[16] Alaska Central Express,[17] Era Aviation,[18] Hageland Aviation Services,[19] and PenAir, four airlines, are headquartered in Anchorage.[20] Alaska Airlines has offices at Anchorage Airport, including the offices of the Alaska Airlines Foundation.[21]

At one time MarkAir had its headquarters in Anchorage.[22] Prior to its dissolution, Reeve Aleutian Airways was headquartered in Anchorage.[23][24]

Anchorage does not levy a sales tax. It does, however, charge a 12% bed tax and an 8% tax on car rentals.[25]

Arts

Whaling Wall by Wyland in downtown Anchorage

Located next to Town Square Park in downtown Anchorage, the Alaska Center for the Performing Arts is a three-part complex, hosting numerous performing arts events each year. The facility can accommodate more than 3,000 patrons. In 2000, nearly 245,000 people visited 678 public performances. It is home to eight resident performing arts companies and has featured mega-musical performed by visiting companies. The center also hosts the International Ice Carving Competition as part of the Fur Rendezvous festival in February.

The Anchorage Concert Association brings 15 to 20 events to the community each winter, including Broadway shows like Disney's The Lion King and Mamma Mia! The Sitka Summer Music Festival presents an "Autumn Classics" festival of chamber music for two weeks each September on the campus of Alaska Pacific University.

The city of Anchorage currently provides three municipal facilities large enough to hold major events such as concerts, trade shows and conventions. Downtown facilities include the Alaska Center for the Performing Arts, William A. Egan Civic & Convention Center and the recently completed Dena’ina Civic and Convention Center, which will be connected via skybridge to form the Anchorage Civic & Convention District. The Sullivan Arena hosts sporting events as well concerts and annual trade shows. The Anchorage Football Stadium and Mulcahy Stadium are also noteworthy sports venues.

Sports

National attention is focused on Anchorage on the first Saturday of each March, when the prestigious Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race kicks off with its ceremonial start downtown on Fourth Avenue. Better known as simply "The Iditarod", the event is the longest and most famous sled dog race in the world. Anchorage is also home to the Fur Rendezvous Open World Championship Sled Dog Races, a three-day dogsled sprint event consisting of 3 timed races of 25.5 miles each. Held each February, the event is part of the annual Fur Rendezvous, a winter sports carnival.

Anchorage currently has three professional sports teams: the Alaska Aces of hockey's ECHL; the Alaska Wild, a member of the Indoor Football League; and the Alaska Dream, a basketball team in the fledgling Pacific Professional Basketball Association.[32]

Anchorage is the home of two teams in the historic Alaska Baseball League, considered by many to be the top amateur college summer league in the country. Attracting players from many of the nation's top college baseball programs, the Anchorage Bucs and Anchorage Glacier Pilots both play at Mulcahy Stadium.

The University of Alaska-Anchorage Seawolves are a member of the National Collegiate Athletic Association. UAA has Division I teams in gymnastics and hockey, as well as several other Division II teams. There are four rugby clubs, including the Bird Creek Barbarians RFC, Anchorage Thunderbirds,[33] Mat Valley Maulers RFC, and Spenard Green Dragons.[34] The season runs from April through September.

Perhaps the most beloved professional sports franchise in the city's history was its first. The Anchorage Northern Knights gained national attention when they joined the eight-team Eastern Basketball Association in 1977, a league whose nearest competitor was 5,000 miles from Anchorage. The Knights captured the 1979–80 league championship, and featured several players who would play in the NBA, most notably Brad Davis, the future player and broadcaster for the Dallas Mavericks. They competed in the renamed Continental Basketball Association for five seasons until the economic recession ended their run in 1982.

Anchorage hosts a number of sporting events. UAA sponsors the annual Great Alaska Shootout, an annual NCAA Division I basketball tournament featuring colleges and universities from across the United States along with the UAA team. Anchorage is the finish line for the Sadler's Ultra Challenge wheelchair race, and holds the ceremonial start of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. The city was the U.S. candidate for hosting the 1992 and 1994 Winter Olympics, but it lost to Albertville, France and Lillehammer, Norway respectively. Anchorage is a premier cross-country skiing city, in terms of density of groomed trails within the urban core. There are 105 miles (169 km) of maintained ski trails in the city, some of which reach downtown. The same trail system also provides access to Chugach State Park, a 495,000-acre (2,000 km2) high alpine park.[35] The Tour of Anchorage is an annual 50-kilometer ski race within the city.[36] and is the Host for the 2009 and 2010 US Senior National Cross Country Ski Championship.[37]

Anchorage is also home to Alaska's first flat track woman's roller derby team, the Rage City Rollergirls.

Parks and recreation

Parks and gardens

  • Alaska Native Heritage Center[38]
  • The Alaska Botanical Garden contains over 900 species of hardy perennials and 150 native plant species[39]
  • Alaska Zoo[40]
  • Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center[41]
  • Delaney Park Strip
  • Kincaid Park
  • Point Woronzof Park
  • Earthquake Park
  • Russian Jack Park
  • Flat Top Mountain Recreation Area
  • Westchester Lagoon/Margaret Sullivan Park
  • Valley of the Moon Park
  • Lyn Ary Park
  • Pop Carr Park
  • Minnesota Park
  • Fairview Lions Park
  • Roosevelt Park
  • Hanna Cove Park
  • University Lake Park
  • Goose Lake Park
  • Conifer Park
  • Muldoon Park
  • McPhee Park
  • Williwaw Park
  • Connors Lake Park
  • Jewel Lake Park
  • Ocean View Park
  • Cutty Sark Park
  • Taku Lake Park
  • Bancroft Park
  • Campbell Park
  • Meadow Park
  • Stork Park
  • Forsythe Park
  • Charles Smith Park
  • Al Miller Memorial Park
  • Lloyd Steel & Balto Seppla Park
  • Tikishla Park
  • Nunaka Valley Park
  • Sitka Park
  • Centennial Park
  • Sand Lake Park
  • Dela Vega Park
  • Southport Park
  • Ocean Bluff Park
  • Ruth Arcand Park
  • Meadow Park
  • Abbott Loop Park

Recreational facilities

Government and politics

Anchorage is governed by an elected mayor and 11 member assembly, with the assistance of a city manager. These positions are non-partisan, and thus no candidates officially run under any party banner. All eleven members are elected from districts known as sections. Five of the sections elect two member while one section elects one. The mayor is elected in a citywide vote. In practice, however, the party affiliation and political ideology of major candidates are usually well known. The city's current mayor is Dan Sullivan, a registered Republican. Along with 7 sister cities in the SCI program, Anchorage has a cultural exchange program with the former Yugoslavia nation of Montenegro.

Anchorage generally leans toward Republican candidates in both State and Presidential elections. However, since the establishment of the Municipality in 1975, there have been two Democratic mayors (Tony Knowles and Mark Begich) who have been elected to two consecutive terms. Downtown, Girdwood, and much of both the west and east parts of town trend Democratic. However, areas closest to the military bases – including Eagle River – and south Anchorage are the most Republican areas of the Municipality. Midtown is relatively moderate by comparison.

Anchorage-Eagle River sends 16 representatives (6 Republicans and 10 Democrats) to the 40-member Alaska House of Representatives and 8 senators (4 Republicans and 4 Democrats) to the 20-member Senate. When seats from the neighboring Mat-Su Borough are added, more than half of the Alaska State legislature comes from the Anchorage metropolitan area. This is often used as an argument in favor of moving the state capital from Juneau to a location in the Anchorage area.

Public safety

Anchorage crime rate (2005), compared
Violent crimes[46]
per 100,000 pop.
Property crimes[47]
per 100,000 pop.
Anchorage[48] 735.6 4,116.1
Alaska[49] 631.9 3,612.5
U.S. cities,
pop. 100,000–249,999[50]
616.2 4,648.4
U.S. cities,
pop. 250,000–499,999[50]
1,015.0 5,584.9
U.S. total[49] 469.2 3,429.8

With a reported strength of 383 sworn officers, the Anchorage Police Department is the largest police department in the state, serving an area of 159 square miles  with a population of over a quarter million people.[51] The Fire & EMS Operations Division of the Anchorage Fire Department (AFD) includes thirteen fire stations with over 300 personnel covering three rotating 24-hour shifts. Additionally, there are volunteer fire departments in Girdwood and Chugiak and fire departments on Elmendorf Air Force Base and Fort Richardson, as well as the Airport Police and Fire Department.[52]

In 2005, the latest year for which data is available, Anchorage reported 735.6 violent crimes per 100,000 population and 4,116.1 property crimes per 100,000 population (see table). Anchorage's crime rate, both for violent and property crimes, is higher than for Alaska as a whole or for the U.S. as a whole. When compared with U.S. cities of similar size, Anchorage has a comparable rate of violent crime and a lower rate of property crime. Anchorage, and Alaska in general, have very high rates of sexual assault in comparison with the rest of the country, with Anchorage's annual rate of forcible rapes over twice as high as for the U.S. as a whole. Alaska Natives are victimized at a much higher rate than their representation in the population.[53]

The Anchorage Community Survey, a public survey conducted in 2004–2005 by the Justice Center at University of Alaska Anchorage, found that overall, Anchorage residents are fairly satisfied with the performance of the Anchorage Police Department.[54] Most survey respondents perceived the justice system to be "somewhat effective" or "very effective" at apprehending and prosecuting criminal suspects, bringing about just outcomes, and reducing crime.[55]

Education

Public education in Anchorage, Eagle River, Fort Richardson and Elmendorf Air Force Base is managed by the Anchorage School District, the 87th largest district in the United States, with nearly 50,000 students attending 88 schools. There are also a number of choices in private education, including both religious and non-denominational schools.

Anchorage has four higher-education facilities that offer bachelor's or master's degrees: the University of Alaska Anchorage,[56] Alaska Pacific University, Charter College,[57] and the Anchorage campus of Texas-based Wayland Baptist University. Other continuing education facilities in Anchorage include the Grainger Leadership Institute, Nine Star Enterprises, CLE International, Nana Worksafe, and PackBear DBA Barr & Co.

Ninety percent of Anchorage's adults have high-school diplomas, 65 percent have attended one to three years of college, and 17 percent hold advanced degrees.

Transportation

There is one numbered state highway in Anchorage; Alaska Route 1. In Anchorage and southward it is known as the Seward Highway, it connects Anchorage to the Kenai Peninsula. Northerly from Anchorage it is known as the Glenn Highway. There is no other road access to Anchorage. A portion of the Seward Highway, approximately 10 miles (20 km) long (known as the New Seward Highway), is built to freeway standards. The Glenn Highway carries commuter traffic to and from Eagle River, Chugiak, and the Matanuska Valley towns of Palmer and Wasilla. The highway reduces from six lanes to four lanes north from Eagle River to the junction with the two-lane Parks Highway (Alaska Route 3), approximately midway between Wasilla and Palmer, where the Glenn reduces to a two-lane highway. Part of Alaska Route 1, as well as parts of other Alaska State Highways, are eligible for federal funding under the Interstate Highway System. Since the 1970s, the Alaska Department of Transportation, in coordination with the Federal Highway Administration and the Municipality of Anchorage, have been exploring the concept of connecting the two points between the Seward and Glenn highways. The project is called "Highway to Highway", and the most recent concept for this project is that of a "trenched" freeway through the heart of Anchorage. Highway to Highway is included in the 2005 Long Range Transportation Plan, and would cost at least $575 million dollars (2005 dollars) – by far the largest urban infrastructure project in Alaska's history. The project is currently undergoing development of the Environmental Impact Statement as required by NEPA for all federal highway projects. This scoping process will cost around $18 million and will take approximately 3 years; expected to be completed by 2011.

Aerial view of the Port of Anchorage on Cook Inlet
Float planes resting at Lake Hood Seaplane Base

Anchorage has a bus system called People Mover, with a central hub in downtown Anchorage and satellite hubs at Dimond Center and Muldoon Mall. The People Mover provides carpool organization services. The public paratransit service known as AnchorRides provides point-to-point accessible transportation services to seniors and those who experience disabilities.

The Alaska Railroad offers year-round freight service along the length of its rail system between Seward (the southern terminus of the system), Fairbanks (the northern terminus of the system), and Whittier (a deep water, ice-free port). Daily passenger service is available during summer (May 15 – September 15), but is reduced to one round-trip per week between Anchrage and Fairbanks during the winter.[58][59][60] Passenger terminals exist at Talkeetna, Denali National Park, Fairbanks, and other places. These communities are also served by bus line from Anchorage. The Ship Creek Shuttle connects downtown with the Ship Creek area, including stops at the Alaska Railroad Depot.

The Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport, six miles (10 km) South from downtown Anchorage, is the airline hub for the state, served by many national and international airlines, including Seattle-based Alaska Airlines as well as a many intrastate airlines and charter air services. The airport is the primary international air freight gateway in the nation, by weight. Twenty-six percent of the tonnage of U.S. international air freight moves through Anchorage.[61] Next to Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport is Lake Hood Seaplane Base, the largest Seaplane Base in the world. Merrill Field, a general aviation airport on the edge of downtown, was the 86th-busiest airport in the nation in 2006.[62]

Anchorage also is currently doing a feasibility study on a commuter rail and light rail system.[63][64] For the commuter rail system, Anchorage would use existing Alaska Railroad tracks to provide service to Whittier, Palmer, Seward, Wasilla, and Eagle River.

Health and utilities

Providence Alaska Medical Center on Providence Drive in Anchorage is the largest hospital in Alaska and is part of Providence Health & Services in Alaska, Washington, Oregon and California. It features the state's most comprehensive range of services. Providence Health System has a history of serving Alaska, beginning when the Sisters of Providence first brought health care to Nome in 1902. As the territory grew during the following decades, so did efforts to provide care. Hospitals were opened in Fairbanks in 1910 and Anchorage in 1937.

Alaska Regional Hospital on DeBarr Road in Anchorage opened in 1958 as Anchorage Presbyterian Hospital, located at 8th and L Street downtown. This predecessor to Alaska Regional was a joint venture between local physicians and the Presbyterian Church. In 1976 the hospital moved to its present location on DeBarr Road, and is now a 254-bed licensed and accredited facility. Alaska Regional has expanded services and in 1994, Alaska Regional joined with HCA, one of the nation's largest healthcare providers.

Alaska Native Medical Center located on Tudor Road, provides medical care and therapeutic health care to Alaska natives – 229 tribes – at the Anchorage site and at 15 satellite facilities throughout the state. ANMC specialists also travel to clinics in the Bush to provide care. The 150-bed hospital is also a teaching center for the University of Washington's regional medical education program. ANMC houses an office of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium and Southcentral Foundation jointly own and manage ANMC.

The Municipal Light & Power (ML&P) and Chugach Electric Association provide electricity to the city. A municipally owned utility since 1932, ML&P supplies electric power to more than 30,000 residential and commercial customers in the Anchorage area. Chugach Electric Association is a not-for-profit, member-owned cooperative that was formed in 1948.

Most homes have natural gas-fueled heat. ENSTAR Natural Gas Company is the sole provider for Anchorage, servicing some 90-percent of the city's population.

The Municipality of Anchorage owns and operates the Water and Wastewater Utility serving an approximate population base of 214,000. Anchorage Municipal Solid Waste Services and Anchorage Refuse conduct trash removal in the city depending on location.

Media

Anchorage's leading newspaper is the Anchorage Daily News,[65] a statewide daily newspaper. Other newspapers include the Alaska Star,[66] serving primarily Chugiak and Eagle River, the Anchorage Press,[67] a free weekly covering mainly cultural topics, and The Northern Light,[68] the student newspaper of the University of Alaska Anchorage.

Anchorage's major network television affiliates are KTUU 2 (NBC), KTBY 4 (Fox), KYES 5 (MyNetworkTV/RTN), KAKM 7 (PBS), KTVA 11 (CBS), KIMO 13 (ABC/CW), and KDMD 33 (Ion/Telemundo). The city's only cable television provider is General Communication, Inc. (GCI). However, Dish Network and DirecTV offer satellite television service in Anchorage and the surrounding area.

There are many radio stations in Anchorage; see List of radio stations in Alaska for more information.

See also


Notes and references

  1. ^ a b c "Annual Estimates of the Population for Incorporated Places in Alaska". United States Census Bureau. 2008-07-01. http://www.census.gov/popest/cities/tables/SUB-EST2008-04-02.csv. Retrieved 2009-07-13. 
  2. ^ "Anchorage municipality, AK; Anchorage, AK Metro Area – ACS Demographic and Housing Estimates:2006". U.S. Census Bureau. no date. http://factfinder.census.gov/servlet/ADPTable?_bm=y&-context=adp&-qr_name=ACS_2006_EST_G00_DP5&-ds_name=ACS_2006_EST_G00_&-tree_id=306&-redoLog=true&-_caller=geoselect&-geo_id=31000US11260&-format=&-_lang=en. Retrieved September 30, 2007. 
  3. ^ National Civil League All-America winners by state
  4. ^ Top 10 Tax-Friendly Cities
  5. ^ Danger Stalks the Land: Alaskan Tales of Death and Survival By Larry Kaniut – St. Martins Press 1999 – Page 2-6 and 287–291
  6. ^ For November, December, and January, average monthly percent possible sunshine (the hours of direct sunlight experienced, divided by the possible hours of sunlight for the location) is below 35%. See http://climate.umn.edu/cawap/mpr/jargon.htm for an explanation of the concept "percent possible sunlight." Data from Data Through 2005 Average Percent Possible Sunshine. National Climatic Data Center. Last accessed November 20, 2006.
  7. ^ "Mt. Spurr's 1992 Eruptions". Alaska Volcano Observatory. http://www.avo.alaska.edu/archives/spurreos/spurreos.php. Retrieved 2008-11-26. 
  8. ^ http://wildlife.alaska.gov/index.cfm?adfg=planning.anchorage5Alaska Dept. of Fish and Game, Living with Wildlife in Anchorage: a Cooperative Planning Effort, April, 2000
  9. ^ Alaska Daily News, Dec 11, 2007, North Side wolf pack attacks, kills dogshttp://dwb.adn.com/news/alaska/wildlife/wolves/story/9514718p-9424671c.html
  10. ^ http://factfinder.census.gov/servlet/ACSSAFFFacts?_event=ChangeGeoContext&geo_id=16000US0203000&_geoContext=&_street=&_county=Anchorage&_cityTown=Anchorage&_state=04000US02&_zip=&_lang=en&_sse=on&ActiveGeoDiv=&_useEV=&pctxt=fph&pgsl=010&_submenuId=factsheet_1&ds_name=ACS_2007_3YR_SAFF&_ci_nbr=null&qr_name=null&reg=null%3Anull&_keyword=&_industry=
  11. ^ http://factfinder.census.gov/servlet/ADPTable?_bm=y&-geo_id=16000US0203000&-qr_name=ACS_2007_3YR_G00_DP3YR5&-ds_name=ACS_2007_3YR_G00_&-_lang=en&-_sse=on
  12. ^ "MLA Data Center Results – Anchorage Municipality County, Alaska". Modern Language Association. no date. http://www.mla.org/map_data_results&state_id=2&county_id=20&mode=geographic&zip=&place_id=&cty_id=&ll=all&a=&ea=&order=r. Retrieved May 13, 2007. 
  13. ^ Moffatt, Riley. Population History of Western U.S. Cities & Towns, 1850–1990. Lanham: Scarecrow, 1996, 1.
  14. ^ About the Anchorage School District | Languages our students speak
  15. ^ "Home > Sister Cities > Homepage". Municipal of Anchorage. http://www.muni.org/sister1/index.cfm. Retrieved 2007-10-12. 
  16. ^ "NORTH SLOPE NATIONAL PETROLEUM RESERVE ALASKA 2008/2009 EXPLORATION DRILLING PROGRAM." ConocoPhillips Alaska. November 2008. Page 1 (1/8). Retrieved on February 14, 2010.
  17. ^ "Contact Us." Alaska Central Express. Retrieved on January 24, 2010.
  18. ^ "Contact Us." Era Aviation. Retrieved on July 16, 2009.
  19. ^ "Contact Us." Hageland Aviation Services. Retrieved on November 3, 2009.
  20. ^ "Contact Us." PenAir. Retrieved on July 16, 2009.
  21. ^ "The Alaska Airlines Foundation." Alaska Airlines. Retrieved on February 27, 2010.
  22. ^ "World Airline Directory." Flight International. March 22-28, 1995. 761.
  23. ^ "World Airline Directory." Flight International. March 30, 1985. 111." Retrieved on July 23, 2009.
  24. ^ "About Us." Reeve Aleutian Airways. August 27, 1998. Retrieved on July 23, 2009.
  25. ^ Alaska Taxable 2008
  26. ^ Alaska Native Heritage Center
  27. ^ Alaska Museum of Natural History
  28. ^ The Anchorage Museum at Rasmuson Center
  29. ^ The Imaginarium!
  30. ^ anchoragehistoric.org
  31. ^ http://www.wellsfargohistory.com/museums/alaska.html
  32. ^ http://thealaskadream.com/Home_Page.html
  33. ^ Home
  34. ^ Alaska Rugby – Bird Creek Barbarians RFC
  35. ^ http://www.muni.org/parks/Trails.cfm
  36. ^ Tour of Anchorage
  37. ^ [1]
  38. ^ www.alaskanative.net – Home
  39. ^ Alaska Botanical Garden
  40. ^ Alaska Zoo Home Page
  41. ^ Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center
  42. ^ Ski Hotline 907-428-1208 | Alpenglow Ski Hotline 907-428-1208
  43. ^ Alaska Ski Vacation Resorts – Alyeska gets top ratings!
  44. ^ Hilltop Ski Area – Home Page
  45. ^ ParkDistrictSW
  46. ^ Includes of murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault.
  47. ^ Includes burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson.
  48. ^ Federal Bureau of Investigation. (2006). "Table 8 (Alaska). Offenses Known to Law Enforcement." Crime in the United States 2005. Retrieved on 2007-04-06.
  49. ^ a b Federal Bureau of Investigation. (2006). "Table 4. Crime in the United States, by Region, Geographic Division, and State, 2004–2005." Crime in the United States 2005. Retrieved on 2007-04-02.
  50. ^ a b Federal Bureau of Investigation. (2006). "Table 16. Rate: Number of Crimes per 100,000 Inhabitants by Population Group, 2005." Crime in the United States 2005. Retrieved on 2007-04-02.
  51. ^ Federal Bureau of Investigation. (2008). "Table 78 (Alaska). Full-Time Law Enforcement Employees by State by City, 2008." Retrieved on 2009-12-11.
  52. ^ Anchorage Fire Department official website. Retrieved on 2007-04-02.
  53. ^ Rosay, André. (Winter 2004). "Forcible Rapes and Sexual Assaults in Anchorage." Alaska Justice Forum 20(4): 1, 9–11. Retrieved on 2007-04-02.
  54. ^ Myrstol, Brad A. (Summer 2005). [ "Making the Grade? Public Evaluation of Police Performance in Anchorage."] Alaska Justice Forum 22(2): 5–10.
  55. ^ Justice Center, University of Alaska Anchorage. (Fall 2005). "Anchorage Attitudes Toward Justice System." Alaska Justice Forum 22(3): 8.
  56. ^ University of Alaska Anchorage
  57. ^ Charter College Virtual Library
  58. ^ The Alaska Railroad – Route Map
  59. ^ The Alaska Railroad – Freight Services
  60. ^ The Alaska Railroad – Fares/Schedules
  61. ^ BTS | Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport, Alaska—Air Freight Gateway
  62. ^ Merrill Field Airport
  63. ^ [2] |Clean Alaska Transportation Project
  64. ^ [3] |Anchorage Daily News Report, June 14, 2008
  65. ^ Anchorage Daily News official website
  66. ^ Alaska Star official website
  67. ^ Anchorage Press official website
  68. ^ The Northern Light official website

External links


Simple English

Anchorage, Alaska
—  Municipality  —
File:Flag of Anchorage,
Flag
Nickname(s): The City of Lights and Flowers
Motto: Live a Big Wild Life
Location in the state of Alaska
Coordinates: 61°13′06″N 149°53′57″W / 61.21833°N 149.89917°W / 61.21833; -149.89917
Borough Municipality of Anchorage
Government
 - Mayor Dan Sullivan
Population (2005)
 - Municipality 275,043
 Metro 339,286
Time zone AKST (UTC-9)
 - Summer (DST) AKDT (UTC-8)
Website [1]

Anchorage is the largest city in Alaska, United States. With a population of 275,043 residents, it makes up more than two-fifths of the states population.

History

Anchorage was originally a construction camp during the building of the Alaska Railroad. By 1920 it had grown to the point where it was decided to officially make it a city. Being at the head of Cook Inlet it became an important place for shipping in Alaska because ships could load and unload cargo to and from the new railroad. In the 1940 an both the army and the air force built bases near Anchorage, and it got even bigger. In 1964 Anchorage was hit by the Good Friday Earthquake, the second strongest earthquake ever recorded. Over a hundred people died and a lot of buildings in and around Anchorage were destroyed. Over the next few years a lot of work went into rebuilding the city and making the buildings better in case there was another earthquake. In 1968 oil was discovered up in the Arctic region of Alaska, and Anchorage again got bigger quickly and merged with other towns in the area. Today it is a modern city with a very large international airport, a large sea port that is very busy, and all the other things you would expect to find in a big city.


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