The area was a fish camp for the indigenous Tlingit Indians. In 1880, nearly 20 years before the gold rushes to the Klondike and Nome, Joe Juneau and Richard Harris were led to Gold Creek by Chief Kowee of the Auk Tribe. They found mother lode deposits upstream, staked their mining claims, and developed a 160 acre incorporated city they called Harrisburg, which brought many prospectors to the area. The City of Juneau was formed in 1900. The state capital was transferred from Sitka to Juneau in 1906 while Alaska was a U.S. territory. The Treadwell and Ready Bullion mines across the channel on Douglas Island became world-scale mines, operating from 1882 to 1917. In 1916, the Alaska-Juneau gold mine was built on the mainland and became the largest operation of its kind in the world. In 1917, a cave-in and flood closed the Treadwell mine on Douglas. It produced $66 million in gold in its 35 years of operation. Fishing, canneries, transportation, trading services, and sawmill contributed to Juneau's growth through the early 1900s. The A-J Mine closed in 1944, after producing over $80 million in gold. In 1970, the City of Juneau, the City of Douglas, and the Greater Juneau Borough were unified into the City & Borough of Juneau.
Juneau is the largest city in Southeast Alaska and the third largest in the State. It is the State capital and relies heavily on government employment. Juneau is a transportation hub and a regional service center for the area. Tourism is a significant contributor to the private sector economy during the summer months, providing a $130 million in income and nearly 2,000 jobs. Over 690,000 visitors arrive by cruise ship, and another 100,000 independent travelers visit Juneau each year. The Mendenhall Glacier, Juneau Icefield air tours, Tracy Arm Fjord Glacier, State Museum, and Mount Roberts Tramway are some of local attractions.
Location & Climate
Located on the mainland of Southeast Alaska, opposite Douglas Island, Juneau was built at the heart of the Inside Passage along the Gastineau Channel. It lies 900 air miles northwest of Seattle and 577 air miles southeast of Anchorage. The community lies at approximately 58.301940° North Latitude and -134.419720° West Longitude. The area encompasses 2,716.7 sq. miles of land and 538.3 sq. miles of water. Juneau has a mild, maritime climate. Average summer temperatures range from 44 to 65 °F; winter temperatures range from 25 to 35 °F. It is in the mildest climate zone in Alaska. Annual precipitation averages 92 inches in downtown Juneau and 54 inches ten miles north at the airport. Snowfall averages 101 inches each year. *State of AK, DOT AMHS.
31,275 (US Census)
Unified Home Rule Municipality originally incorporated as a city in 1900 and in 1970 was consolidated into a Borough. The borough employs 17 lead staff positions and many support staff. Regular elections are held every 1st Tuesday in October. Borough Assembly meets every 3rd Monday. The current city sales tax is 5%. www.juneau.org
Alaska Electric Light & Power Company (Private). Power source: hydro with diesel back-up. Kilowatt capacity: 214,610. In November of 2010 the small commercial rate for 1,500kWh/month was $0.1355 with a monthly fee of $18.80. (JEDC Asset Mapping Report)
Water & Sewer Utilities
The municipal water supply is obtained from the Last Chance Basin well field on Gold Creek and the Salmon Creek Reservoir, and is treated and piped to over 90% of Juneau households. Juneau's water demand is 5 million gallons per day. The Borough's piped sewage system serves approximately 80% of residents, and receives secondary treatment. Sludge is incinerated. North Douglas Island residents use individual septic tanks, and funds have been provided to begin planning a sewer main extension to this area.
Refuse collection, the landfill and incinerator are owned by a private firm, Waste Management Co. Juneau has a sludge site, hazardous waste collection facility, and local organizations also provide recycling programs.
Marine facilities include a seaplane landing area at Juneau Harbor, two deep draft docks, five small boat harbors and a State ferry terminal. The municipal-owned Juneau International Airport includes a paved 8,457' long by 150' wide runway and a seaplane landing area and has just completed Phase II of the Airport Terminal Renovation Project and the runway extension project is underway.
The Borough’s Docks and Harbors Department operates and manages multiple waterfront facilities and properties throughout the City and Borough of Juneau. These includes two cruise ship docks, several small boat harbors and small boat floats, six launch ramps, two commercial loading facilities, two boat yards, and several hundred acres of tidelands and waterfront properties under lease.
Juneau is accessible by major airline and State-owned Alaska Marine Highway System as well as small air and water craft. Within the community there is a public bus transportation servicing the entire borough.
Within the Juneau School District, there are a total of 14 schools; six elementary with two offering pre-school classes, two middle schools, and three high schools. There is also a home school program, a correspondence program, as well as grades 9-12 offered through the Johnson Youth Center. Enrollment for the district for the 2010-11 school year was 5,065. Student-teacher ratio: 14.3:1. University of Alaska Southeast, Juneau Campus.
Bartlett Regional Hospital. SEARHC Medical/Dental Clinic. Juneau Public Health Center. The hospital is a qualified Acute Care facility and Medevac Service. Long Term Care: Juneau Pioneers' Home; St. Ann's Nursing Home. Specialized Care: Juneau Recovery Hospital/Bartlett; Aiding Women in Abuse & Rape Emergencies. Juneau Public Health Center. US Coast Guard Dispensary. Emergency service is provided by 911 Telephone Service, paid EMS Service and volunteers.
Federally Recognized Tribe
Central Council Tlingit & Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska (Represents Tlingit and Haida Indians in all of Southeast and parts of the continental United States),(Village Council; Non-Profit for Sealaska and Bureau Of Indian Affairs-Recognized Traditional Council), Douglas Indian Association, and Aukquan Traditional Council.
Goldbelt Incorporated (Urban Corporation, one of four established in ANCSA), Sealaska Corporation (Regional Native Corporation).
Other Communty Buildings
Three Public Libraries, Eagle Crest Ski Area, Juenau Douglas Museaum, State of Alaska Museaum, Diamond Park Aquatic Center, Augustus Brown Pool, Treadwell Ice Arena, Cenntenial Hall Convention Center, Zack Gordon Youth Center, Jensen-Olsen Arboretum, ANB/ANS Hall, State Superior Court/District Court Buildings, Lemon Creek Correctional Center, multiple senior care centers.
Community Economic Development Projects
- Juneau Affordable Housing Fund
- Industrial Boulevard Improvements
- Industrial Boulevard Water System Improvements
- Airport Terminal
- Pederson Hill Access (for affordable housing)
- Switzer Area Muni Land Development
- Off Highway Vehicle Site Study
- Centennial Hall Roof Replacement & Emergency Improvements
- Eaglecrest Master Plan
- Child and Adolescent Health Care Facility
- Airport Runway Safety Area Paving, Lighting, Navigational Signs, control system
- Cruise Ship Dock Improvements; uplands; seawalk
Sealaska Heritage Institue's Priority Project
- Walter Soboleff Center