List of boroughs and census areas in Alaska

The U.S. state of Alaska is divided into 19 organized boroughs and one Unorganized Borough. Alaska and Louisiana are the only states that do not call their first-order administrative subdivisions counties (Louisiana uses parishes instead).[1]

Many of the most densely populated regions of the state are part of Alaska's boroughs, which function similarly to counties in other states. However, unlike county equivalents in the other 49 states, the organized boroughs do not cover the entire land area of the state. The area not part of any organized borough is referred to as the Unorganized Borough. The U.S. Census Bureau, in cooperation with the state, divides the Unorganized Borough into 10 census areas, each roughly corresponding to an election district, thus totaling 29 county equivalents. However, these areas exist solely for the purposes of statistical analysis and presentation; they have no government of their own. Boroughs and census areas are both treated as county-level equivalents by the Census Bureau.

Some areas in the unorganized borough receive limited public services directly from the Alaska state government, usually law enforcement from the Alaska State Troopers and educational funding.

Six consolidated city-borough governments exist—Juneau City and Borough, Skagway Municipality, Sitka City and Borough, Yakutat City and Borough, Wrangell City and Borough, as well as the state's largest city, Anchorage. Though its legal name is the Municipality of Anchorage, it is considered a consolidated city-borough under state law.

The Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) 55-2,3,4 codes, which are used by the United States Census Bureau to uniquely identify states and counties, is provided with each entry.[2] Alaska's code is 02, so each code is of the format 02XXX. The FIPS code for each county equivalent links to census data for that county equivalent.

Boroughs and Census Areas of Alaska
Alaska boroughs and census areas
Borough • City-borough • Census area
LocationState of Alaska
Number19 Organized boroughs
10 Census areas
Populations(Organized boroughs): 662 (Yakutat) – 291,826 (Anchorage)
(Census areas):2,150 (Hoonah-Angoon) – 17,013 (Bethel)
Areas(Organized boroughs): 452 square miles (1,170 km2) (Skagway) – 88,817 square miles (230,030 km2) (North Slope)
(Census Areas): 3,760 square miles (9,700 km2) (Prince of Wales-Hyder) – 145,900 square miles (378,000 km2) (Yukon-Koyukuk)
GovernmentBorough government
SubdivisionsCommunities, consolidated city-borough

List of boroughs

FIPS code[3] Borough seat[1] Class
Established[1] Origin Etymology Density
Population[1] Area[1] Map
Aleutians East Borough 013 Sand Point Second 1987 - Its location in the east Aleutian Islands, which are themselves of uncertain linguistic origin; possibly derived from Chukchi word aliat ("island") 0.45 3,141 6,988 sq mi
(18,099 km2)
State map highlighting Aleutians East Borough
Anchorage 020 (Consolidated
Unified Home Rule 1964/1975 Anchorage Borough formed in 1964, merged with city in 1975 to form unified city-borough Derived from the presence of a safe place to anchor and unload supplies for construction of the Alaska Railroad circa 1913, thereby creating a community. 171.18 291,826 1,697 sq mi
(4,395 km2)
State map highlighting Anchorage
Bristol Bay Borough 060 Naknek Second 1962 - Named in 1778 by Capt. James Cook for George Digby, 2nd Earl of Bristol. 1.98 997 505 sq mi
(1,308 km2)
State map highlighting Bristol Bay Borough
Denali Borough 068 Healy Home Rule 1990 - From Denali, the tallest North American mountain, which means "great one" in the Dena'ina language 0.14 1,826 12,750 sq mi
(33,022 km2)
State map highlighting Denali Borough
Fairbanks North Star Borough 090 Fairbanks Second 1964 - Named for its borough seat of Fairbanks, named in turn for Charles Fairbanks (1852 - 1918), U.S. Senator from Indiana and vice president under Theodore Roosevelt, and for Polaris, the North Star 13.30 97,581 7,366 sq mi
(19,078 km2)
State map highlighting Fairbanks North Star Borough
Haines Borough 100 (Consolidated
Home Rule 1968
(Consolidated 2002)
- After Haines, which was itself named for Mrs. F.E. Haines, the key fundraiser for the construction of a Presbyterian mission in the town. 1.08 2,508 2,344 sq mi
(6,071 km2)
State map highlighting Haines Borough
Juneau 110 (Consolidated
Unified Home Rule 1970 The cities of Juneau and Douglas merged with the surrounding borough to form the municipality Joseph "Joe" Juneau, prospector and co-founder of the city. 11.58 31,275 2,716 sq mi
(7,034 km2)
State map highlighting Juneau
Kenai Peninsula Borough 122 Soldotna Second 1964 - The Kenai Peninsula, whose name may be derived from Kenayskaya, the Russian name for Cook Inlet. 3.45 55,400 16,013 sq mi
(41,473 km2)
State map highlighting Kenai Peninsula Borough
Ketchikan Gateway Borough 130 Ketchikan Second 1963 - The borough seat of Ketchikan and the borough's gateway location on the Alaska-Canada border. 2.77 13,477 4,840 sq mi
(12,536 km2)
State map highlighting Ketchikan Gateway Borough
Kodiak Island Borough 150 Kodiak Second 1963 - Named after Kodiak Island, which may itself be named for the Koniag people 2.08 13,592 6,560 sq mi
(16,990 km2)
State map highlighting Kodiak Island Borough
Lake and Peninsula Borough 164 King Salmon Home Rule 1989 - The borough's many large lakes, and the Alaska Peninsula 0.07 1,631 23,782 sq mi
(61,595 km2)
State map highlighting Lake and Peninsula Borough
Matanuska-Susitna Borough 170 Palmer Second 1964 - Named for the valley that the Matanuska and Susitna Rivers form. 3.62 88,995 24,682 sq mi
(63,926 km2)
State map highlighting Matanuska-Susitna Borough
North Slope Borough 185 Utqiagvik Home Rule 1972 - The Alaska North Slope along the Brooks Range. 0.11 9,430 88,817 sq mi
(230,035 km2)
State map highlighting North Slope Borough
Northwest Arctic Borough 188 Kotzebue Home Rule 1986 In 1986, residents of Kotzebue and 10 other area villages voted to form the Northwest Arctic Borough (with boundaries coincident with those of NANA), to be economically based on taxing the Red Dog mine, then under development. Its geographic location and position above the Arctic Circle. 0.21 7,523 35,898 sq mi
(92,975 km2)
State map highlighting Northwest Arctic Borough
Petersburg Borough 195 Petersburg Home Rule 2013 Incorporated after voters approved borough formation in December 2012. Named for Norwegian immigrant Peter Buschmann, founder of the former city of Petersburg. 1.16 3,815 3,829 sq mi
(9,917 km2)
State map highlighting Petersburg Borough
Sitka 220 (Consolidated
Unified Home Rule 1971 - Derived from Tlingit word Shee At'iká, meaning "People on the outside of Shee (Baranof Island)." 3.09 8,881 2,874 sq mi
(7,444 km2)
State map highlighting Sitka
Skagway 230 (Consolidated
First 2007 - Derived from Tlingit word Shgagwèi, meaning "a windy place with white caps on the water." 2.14 968 452 sq mi
(1,171 km2)
State map highlighting Skagway
Unorganized Borough - - - 1961 The Borough Act of 1961 created The Unorganized Borough including all of Alaska not within a Unified, Home rule, First class or Second class borough. A legal entity in Alaska, covering those parts of Alaska not within an incorporated borough; it is administered by the state of Alaska.[7] 0.24 74,334 323,440 sq mi
(837,706 km2)
State map highlighting Unorganized Borough
Wrangell 275 (Consolidated
Unified Home Rule 2008 formerly part of Wrangell-Petersburg Census Area Ferdinand von Wrangel, Russian administrator of Alaska, 1840-49. 0.93 2,369 2,570 sq mi
(6,656 km2)
State map highlighting Wrangell
Yakutat 282 (Consolidated
Home Rule 1992 - Yakutat Bay and the Yakutat Alaska Native people 0.09 662 7,650 sq mi
(19,813 km2)
State map highlighting Yakutat

Census areas in the Unorganized Borough

Map of Alaska highlighting the Unorganized Borough
Map of Alaska highlighting the Unorganized Borough

The Unorganized Borough is the portion of the U.S. state of Alaska not contained in any of its 19 organized boroughs. It encompasses over half of Alaska's area, 970,500 km² (374,712 mi²), an area larger than any other U.S. state. As of the 2000 census 13% of Alaskans (81,803 people) reside in it.

Currently unique among the United States, Alaska is not entirely subdivided into organized county equivalents. For the 1980 census, the United States Census Bureau divided the unorganized borough into 12 census areas to facilitate census taking in the vast unorganized area. As new boroughs incorporate, these areas have been altered or eliminated to accommodate,[8] such that there are currently 10 census areas:

Census area
FIPS code[3] Largest town
(as of 2000)
Etymology Density
Population[1] Area[1] Map
Aleutians West Census Area 016 Unalaska Location in the western Aleutian Islands. 1.27 5,561 4,397 sq mi
(11,388 km2)
State map highlighting Aleutians West Census Area
Bethel Census Area 050 Bethel City of Bethel, the largest settlement in the census area, which is itself named for the Biblical term Bethel ("house of God"). 0.42 17,013 40,633 sq mi
(105,239 km2)
State map highlighting Bethel Census Area
Dillingham Census Area 070 Dillingham The city of Dillingham, the largest settlement in the area, which was itself named after United States Senator Paul Dillingham (1843-1923), who had toured Alaska extensively with his Senate subcommittee in 1903. 0.26 4,847 18,675 sq mi
(48,368 km2)
State map highlighting Dillingham Census Area
Hoonah–Angoon Census Area 105 Hoonah The cities of Hoonah and Angoon 0.29 2,150 7,444 sq mi
(19,280 km2)
State map highlighting Hoonah–Angoon Census Area
Kusilvak Census Area 158 Hooper Bay Kusilvak Mountains
(Known as Wade Hampton prior to 2015)
0.44 7,459 17,194 sq mi
(44,532 km2)
State map highlighting Kusilvak Census Area
Nome Census Area 180 Nome City of Nome, the largest settlement in the census area. 0.41 9,492 23,001 sq mi
(59,572 km2)
State map highlighting Nome Census Area
Prince of Wales-Hyder Census Area 198 Craig Prince of Wales Island and the town of Hyder
(Known as Prince of Wales-Outer Ketchikan prior to the expansion of Ketchikan Gateway Borough in 2008)
1.42 5,559 3,760 sq mi
(9,738 km2)
State map highlighting Prince of Wales-Hyder Census Area
Southeast Fairbanks Census Area 240 Deltana Its location, southeast of Fairbanks 0.28 7,029 24,814 sq mi
(64,268 km2)
State map highlighting Southeast Fairbanks Census Area
Valdez-Cordova Census Area 261 Valdez Cities of Valdez and Cordova 0.28 9,636 34,319 sq mi
(88,886 km2)
State map highlighting Valdez-Cordova Census Area
Yukon-Koyukuk Census Area 290 Fort Yukon Yukon River ("great river" in Gwich’in), which flows through the census area; and the city of Koyukuk 0.04 5,588 145,900 sq mi
(377,879 km2)
State map highlighting Yukon-Koyukuk Census Area


^ A: Because census areas in the Unorganized Borough have their own FIPS codes, this code listed and linked is for the entire state of Alaska.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g "Find A County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2012-04-07.
  2. ^ "FIPS Publish 6-4". National Institute of Standards and Technology. Retrieved 2007-04-11.
  3. ^ a b "EPA County FIPS Code Listing". Retrieved 2008-02-23.
  4. ^ "Municipal Certificates". Local Boundary Commission, Division of Community and Regional Affairs, Alaska Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development. Retrieved 2018-01-05.
  5. ^ "Alaska Taxable 2004 Municipal Taxation - Rates and Policies" (PDF). Division of Community and Regional Affairs, Alaska Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development. January 2005. Retrieved 2008-07-16.
  6. ^ "Background on Boroughs in Alaska" (PDF). Local Boundary Commission, Division of Community and Regional Affairs, Alaska Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development. November 2000. Retrieved 2008-07-16.
  7. ^ "Governmental Unit Boundary Data Content Standard (Working Draft, Version 2.0)" (PDF). Subcommittee on Cultural and Demographic Data, Federal Geographic Data Committee, United States Census Bureau, United States Department of Commerce. February 1999. Retrieved 2008-07-16.
  8. ^ "Substantial Changes to Counties and County Equivalent Entities: 1970-Present". United States Census Bureau.

Other sources

See also


A borough is an administrative division in various English-speaking countries. In principle, the term borough designates a self-governing walled town, although in practice, official use of the term varies widely.

Elections in Alaska

The number of elections in Alaska varies by year, but typically municipal elections occur every year, plus primary and general elections for federal and state offices occur during even-numbered years. Alaska has a gubernatorial election every four years. Members of the state's United States congressional delegation run for election or re-election at the times set out in the United States Constitution. Primary elections assist in choosing political parties' nominees for various positions. On a regional basis (see list of boroughs and census areas in Alaska), elections also cover municipal issues. In addition, a special election can occur at any time.

Geography of Alaska

Alaska is one of two U.S. states not bordered by another state; Hawaii is the other. Alaska has more ocean coastline than all of the other U.S. states combined. About 500 miles (800 km) of Canadian territory separate Alaska from Washington State. Alaska is thus an exclave of the United States that is part of the continental U.S. and the U.S. West Coast, but is not part of the contiguous U.S. Alaska is also the only state, other than Hawaii, whose capital city is accessible only via ship or air, because no roads connect Juneau to the rest of the continent.

The state is bordered by Yukon and British Columbia, Canada to the east, the Gulf of Alaska and the Pacific Ocean to the south, Russia (Chukotka Autonomous Okrug), Bering Sea, the Bering Strait, and Chukchi Sea to the west, and the Beaufort Sea and the Arctic Ocean to the north.

Because it extends into the Eastern Hemisphere, it is technically both the westernmost and easternmost state in the United States, as well as also being the northernmost.

Alaska is the largest state in the United States in terms of land area at 570,380 square miles (1,477,300 km2), over twice (roughly 2.47 times) as large as Texas, the next largest state, and is the seventh largest country subdivision in the world. If the state's westernmost point were superimposed on San Francisco, California, its easternmost point would be in Jacksonville, Florida. Alaska is larger than all but 18 sovereign nations (it is slightly larger than Iran but slightly smaller than Libya). Alaska is home to 3.5 million lakes of 20 acres (8.1 ha) or larger. Marshlands and wetland permafrost cover 188,320 square miles (487,700 km2) (mostly in northern, western and southwest flatlands). Frozen water, in the form of glacier ice, covers some 16,000 square miles (41,000 km2) of land and 1,200 square miles (3,100 km2) of tidal zone. The Bering Glacier complex near the southeastern border with Yukon, Canada, covers 2,250 square miles (5,800 km2) alone.

List of census-designated places in Alaska

Alaska is a state situated in the northwest extremity of the North American continent. According to the 2010 United States Census, Alaska is the 3rd least populous state with 736,732 inhabitants but is the largest by land area spanning 665,384.04 square miles (1,723,336.8 km2) of land. Alaska has 204 census-designated places and six former census-designated places.Changes for 2010 include the addition of twelve new census-designated places: Badger, Chena Ridge, Eureka Roadhouse, Farmers Loop, Goldstream, Loring, Mertarvik, Nabesna, Point Possession, South Van Horn, Steele Creek, and Whitestone. Six former census-designated places counted for the 2000 census were included in 2010: Alpine, Copperville (merged into Tazlina CDP), Cube Cove, Miller Landing (annexed to Homer city), Meyers Chuck and Thoms Place (both incorporated into Wrangell city and borough). Two former CDPs became cities: Adak (incorporated in 2001) and Gustavus (incorporated in 2004). Skagway (disincorporated in 2007) is now a census-designated places. Finally, one census-designated place has a new name: Y is now Susitna North.

List of cities in Alaska

Alaska is a state of the United States in the northwest extremity of the North American continent. According to the 2010 United States Census, Alaska is the 3rd least populous state with 710,231 inhabitants but is the largest by land area spanning 570,640.95 square miles (1,477,953.3 km2). Alaska is divided administratively into 19 organized boroughs and one Unorganized Borough (which is divided into 10 non-administrative census areas) and contains 149 incorporated cities: four unified home rule municipalities, which are considered both boroughs and cities; ten home rule cities; nineteen first class cities; and 116 second class cities. Alaska's incorporated cities cover only 2.1% of the territory's land mass but are home to 69.92% of its population. The majority of the incorporated land mass consists of the four unified municipalities, each over 1,700 square miles (4,400 km2) in size. Only two other cities have an incorporated area exceeding 100 square miles (260 km2): Unalaska, which includes the fishing port of Dutch Harbor, and Valdez, which includes the terminus of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System.

Incorporated cities in Alaska are categorized as either "general law" (subdivided into "first class" and "second class") or "home rule". In general, the powers and functions of general law cities and home rule cities are substantially the same, with all legislative powers not prohibited by law or charter. Apart from duties such as conducting elections and holding regular meetings of the governing bodies, the duties of local cities vary considerably and are determined at the local level. Home rule cities and first class cities in the unorganized borough must, however, operate municipal school districts, exercise planning, and land use regulations while organized boroughs take on these responsibilities unless delegated to the city by the borough. Unified home rule cities (and other boroughs) also have the duty to collect municipal property and sales tax for use in their jurisdiction. Home rule cities occur when a community establishes a commission to draft a charter, which is then ratified by voters at an election. Title 29 of the Alaska Statutes, which covers municipal government, requires that a community must have at least 400 permanent residents to incorporate as a home rule or first class city. This status does not diminish if a city's population declines; one home rule city (Nenana) and four first class cities (Hydaburg, Pelican, Seldovia and Tanana) reported populations falling below that threshold in the 2010 Census.The largest municipality by population in Alaska is Anchorage with 291,826 residents or approximately 41.1% of the state population. The smallest municipality by population is Bettles with 12 residents. The largest municipality by land area is Sitka which spans 2,870.34 sq mi (7,434.1 km2), while Kiana is the smallest at 0.19 sq mi (0.49 km2). The first city to incorporate was Ketchikan in 1901 and the newest municipality is Whale Pass which incorporated in 2017.

List of places in Alaska

This is a list of places in Alaska, including cities, towns, unincorporated communities, counties, and other recognized places. The list also includes information on the number and names of counties in which the place lies, and its lower and upper zip code bounds, if applicable.

Largest cities
pop. over 25,000
Smaller cities
pop. over 2,000
Census Areas
Federal district
Insular areas
Outlying Islands
Native areas


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