US DOT: 49922
Juneau, AlaskaWhen moving to Juneau, Alaska you will find discover a surprising mix of anglers, teachers, legislators, artists, homemakers and Native elders. Maybe the only city in the country you can watch humpbacks in the morning, take in performing arts in the evening, and enjoy a few locally brewed beers at night, Juneau, Alaska provides all the activities and attractions you would expect from a state capital. The city’s locals are a friendly bunch. Fiercely loyal and in love with their city, the locals are open to sharing it all with you.
History:Harrisburg was the towns original name until Richard Harris fell out of favor with the locals, who turned their allegiance to co-founder, Joe Juneau. In 1880, gold was discovered in the city. The state's first major gold strike had started, and modern Juneau history began. A rush of 40 miners brought trading posts, saloons and missionaries into town. Within a year, the tent camp had become a small town. In 1916, the Alaska-Juneau gold mine was constructed on the mainland, quickly becoming the largest operation of its kind in the world. Fishing, canneries and transportation services contributed to Juneau's growth through the early 1900s. Before the Alaska-Juneau mine closed in 1944 (mining was declared a non-essential wartime activity), it produced more than $80 million in gold. Mining was replaced by the expansion of government during the war and afterwards. Juneau's prospector heritage and stunning scenery began drawing visitors in the early 1900s. As a popular cruise ship port, and a preferred destination among adventure travelers, Alaska's capital continues to draw visitors from around the world.
Economy:Federal, state and local government employs nearly half of Juneau’s working population. Those with the largest number of workers are the U.S. Forest Service, National Park Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Marine Fisheries Service, U.S. Postal Service and the U.S. Coast Guard. It is estimated that for each government worker, one private sector job is needed to supply the services required by the government workers. Tourism is the city’s largest private-sector employer. The number of non-Alaskan visitors to Juneau tops 800,000 each year, accounting for about half of the total Alaska visitor market. Commercial fishing and fish processing are other significant sector of the local economy. Salmon hatcheries and a cold storage facility operate in town, processing two million pounds of salmon, halibut and crab annually. Kenneccott Greens Creek Mine produces gold, silver, lead and zinc, and is one of the largest silver mines in the country. In December 2004, an environmental impact study was completed, allowing the Kensington Gold Mine project to continue. It is expected to create about 200 construction jobs for two years, then about 250 positions for its 10 to 15 years of operation.
Tourism:Start your exploration by visiting the city’s beautiful glaciers. An awe-inspiring sight, don’t be surprised if you find yourself transfixed on this amazing natural wonder. Next, experience a little wildlife. Juneau has such an abundance of air, land and sea creatures for you to experience, including bear, bald eagle or even a humpback whale. And if you would like to watch the wildlife closer, a mixture of tours will get you up-close and personal. Sea kayaking, hiking, rafting and other outdoor adventures offer invigorating opportunities to enjoy Alaska's wilderness. For a unique experience, take a small plane or helicopter ride to view the sights from above. During the winter, hit the slopes for downhill and cross-country skiing and snowboarding. The perfect place for fishing, Juneau residents have been known to schedule their year around the salmon migration. If you're inclined to cast a line, you can charter a boat with a local—you might just snag a few good tips.