Alaska – General Information

Anchorage is a unique, year-round destination with once-in-a-lifetime experiences, a place where young spirits and adventurous souls come to play. Step foot on a glacier, fish for king salmon, hike to a mountain vista, fly out to Mount McKinley, cruise in comfort through Prince William Sound and enjoy hip, metropolitan amenities with frontier flair. Tap into your sense of adventure!

One destination. Endless adventure.

Alaska’s largest city is a vibrant, eclectic metropolis with a frontier spirit, located in one of the world’s most spectacular settings. Embraced by six mountain ranges and warmed by a maritime climate, summer days seem endless and winter is truly a wonderland. It’s a young city, founded in 1915, but it boasts a fascinating past.

From its roots as a railroad construction camp and tent city, Anchorage has grown to nearly 300,000 people with more than 95 languages spoken. The diversity of the city’s residents means a multitude of arts and cultural activities, unique dining options and variety of events.

The presentation from the 2014 Annual Summit introducing Alaska as the host for the 2015 Annual Summit has more detailed information about Alaska’s economic development successes and challenges.

General Information About Anchorage


291,826. Anchorage is Alaska’s largest city with 41 percent of the state’s population

Note: Alaskans are very friendly. Do not be alarmed if residents smile and greet you or offer assistance; they only want you to have a great time!

Time Zone

Anchorage, and virtually all of Alaska, is in Alaska Standard Time, one hour behind Pacific Standard Time and four hours behind Eastern Standard Time.


Anchorages stretches from Portage Glacier to Eklutna, encompassing 1,961 square miles (507,923 hectares) – about the size of the state of Delaware.


Anchorage sits at the base of the Chugach Mountains along the coast of Cook Inlet in Southcentral Alaska. Alaska is acutally the most northern, western and eastern point in the United States. The Aleutian Chain extends into the Eastern Hemisphere.

Sales Tax

There is no sales tax in Anchorage. Shopping in Anchorage makes sense; you’ll find better prices here than in other parts of Alaska.


You can see the Chugach, Kenai, Talkeetna, Tordrillo, Aleutian and Alaska mountain ranges from Anchorage. Mount McKinley, 130 miles (208 km) north of downtown, can be seen on clear days. This 20,320-foot peak is the tallest mountain in North America. The mountains surrounding Anchorage aren’t just big, they’re the place to go for big adventures.

Earthquake Evidence

The Good Friday Earthquake shook all of Southcentral Alaska on March 27, 1964. It is the strongest ever recorded in North America, measuring 9.2 on the Richter Scale.


There are approximately 100,000 glaciers in Alaska, 60 of which are within 50 miles of Anchorage. Portage Glacier, just 45 miles (72 km) south of downtown, is one of the most visited attractions in all of Alaska. Find out why glaciers are Alaska’s number one attraction.


Alaska has about one registered pilot for every 58 residents, six times as many pilots per capita and 14 times as many airplanes per capita as the rest of the United States. Aviation is a vital link to remote areas, and also a great way to see the state for visitors. Many flightseeing tours offer an eagle eye view of Alaska wildlife, glaciers and landscapes.

Electrical Service

Outlets in Alaska are 110 volts, 60 AC-the same as the rest of the United States.


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University Economic Development Association
PO Box 97930
Pittsburgh, PA 15227

216.200.UEDA (8332)