Home Rule City
in the Fairbanks North Star Borough - FNSB
- Current Population
- Population Comment
- 2013 Department of Labor Estimate
- Pronunciation/Other Names
- (fair' banks)
- Community's Judicial District
- Recording District
Geography and Climate
- Fairbanks is located in the heart of Alaska's Interior, on the banks of the Chena River in the Tanana Valley. By air, Fairbanks is 45 minutes from Anchorage and 3 hours from Seattle. It lies 358 road miles north of Anchorage.
- Interior Alaska experiences seasonal temperature extremes. Average January temperatures range from -19 to -2 °F; average July temperatures range from 53 to 72 °F. Annual precipitation averages 11.5 inches with 67.8 inches of snowfall. Temperatures have been recorded as low as -62 °F in mid-winter and as high as 96 °F in summer. During the winter months, if the temperature drops below -20 °F, ice fog can occur. Fairbanks is known for its lingering summer days. When the solstice arrives, there are more than 22 hours of daylight.
- Community Map Available
- Sq Mi Land
- Sq Mi Water
History and Culture
- Koyukon Athabascans have lived in this area for thousands of years. In 1901, Captain E.T. Barnette established a trading post on the Chena River called "Barnette's Cache." A year later, gold was discovered 16 miles north of the post. The town grew as the Chena steamboat landing brought many prospectors during the Pedro Dome gold rush. Fairbanks was named in 1902 after Indiana Senator Charles Fairbanks, who became Vice President of the US from 1905 to 1909. In 1903, Judge Wikersham moved the seat of the third judicial district from Eagle to Fairbanks. The population of the area continued to increase as Fairbanks became the hub of the Interior with the addition of the court, government offices, a jail, a post office, and the Northern Commercial Company. Barnette was elected as the first mayor of the City of Fairbanks in 1903 and established telephone service, fire protection, sanitation ordinances, electricity, and steam heat. He also founded the Washington-Alaska Bank. By 1910, the official population had grown to 3,541, although more than 6,000 miners lived and worked their claims on creeks north of town. Ladd Field (now Fort Wainwright) was constructed in 1938. Construction of the Alcan Highway in the 1940s and the Trans-Alaska oil pipeline in the 1970s fueled growth and development.
- The Fairbanks area is the second-largest population settlement in Alaska.
- Federally Recognized Tribe
Facilities, Utilities, and Health Care
- Municipal Facilities & Utilities
- Refuse Collection, Police, Fire Department, Snow Removal/Street Maintenance, City Cemetery
- Fairbanks is at the confluence of the Richardson Highway, George Parks Highway, Steese Highway, and Elliott Highway, connecting the Interior to Anchorage, Canada, and the lower 48 states. The Dalton Highway to Prudhoe Bay begins about 75 miles north of town. Goods are transported to Fairbanks by truck, air, and the Alaska Railroad. Regularly-scheduled jet flights are available at the state-owned Fairbanks International Airport. An 11,800' by 150' asphalt runway and a 2,900' by 75' gravel landing strip, heliport, and seaplane landing area are available. A public seaplane base is also located on the Chena River. In addition, there are several privately-owned airstrips and heliports in the vicinity.
- State Ferry
- Cargo Barge
- Road Connection
- Community's Senate District
- Community's House District