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Barrow

Barrow

Browse Locations Barrow

 

Barrow

(BARE-row); a.k.a. Ukpeagvik

 

Current Population:              4,309   (2011 Alaska Department of Labor Estimate)

Incorporation Type:              1st Class City

Located In:                           North Slope Borough

Taxes:                                   Sales: None, Property: 18.5 mills (borough), Special: None

                                            

 

 

Location and Climate

Barrow, the northernmost community in the United States, is located on the Chukchi Sea coast, 10 miles south of Point Barrow, from which it takes its name. It lies 725 air miles from Anchorage. The community lies at approximately 71.290560° North Latitude and -156.788610° West Longitude. (Sec. 06, T022N, R018W, Umiat Meridian.)   Barrow is located in the Barrow Recording District.  The area encompasses 18.4 sq. miles of land and 2.9 sq. miles of water.

The climate of Barrow is arctic. Annual precipitation is light, averaging 5 inches, and annual snowfall is 20 inches. Temperatures range from -56 to 78 °F, with an average temperature of 40 °F during summer. The sun does not set between May 10th and August 2nd each summer and does not rise between Nov. 18th and January 24th each winter. The daily minimum temperature is below freezing 324 days of the year. Prevailing winds are easterly and average 12 mph. The Chukchi Sea is typically ice-free from mid-June through October.

 

History, Culture and Demographics

Archaeological sites in the area indicate habitation from 500 to 900 A.D. Inupiats traditionally depend on subsistence marine mammal hunting, supplemented by inland hunting and fishing. Archaeological remains of sixteen dwelling mounds from the Birnirk culture exist today. Barrow was named for Sir John Barrow, 2nd Secretary of the British Admiralty. The city's Eskimo name is Ukpeagvik ("place where owls are hunted"). In 1881, the U.S. Army established a meteorological and magnetic research station near Barrow. The Cape Smythe Whaling and Trading Station was constructed there in 1893. A Presbyterian church was established in 1899, and a post office was opened in 1901. Exploration of the Naval Petroleum Reserve Number 4 (now National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska, NPR-A) began in 1946. The Naval Arctic Research Laboratory, 3 miles north of Barrow, soon followed. The city was incorporated in 1958. Formation of the North Slope Borough in 1972 and the Arctic Slope Regional Corporation, as well as construction of the Prudhoe Bay oilfields and Trans-Alaska Pipeline, have each contributed to the development of Barrow. Today, tax revenues from the North Slope oil fields fund borough-wide services.

A federally-recognized tribe is located in the community -- the Native Village of Barrow Inupiat Traditional Government; Inupiat Community of the Arctic Slope. The majority of residents are Inupiat Eskimos. Traditional marine mammal hunts and other subsistence practices are an active part of the culture. Bowhead, gray, killer, and beluga whales migrate near Barrow each summer. The sale of alcohol is banned in the community, although importation and possession are allowed.

According to Census 2010, there were 1,554 housing units in the community and 1,280 were occupied. Its population was 61.2 percent American Indian or Alaska Native; 16.9 percent white; 1 percent black; 9.1 percent Asian; 2.4 percent Pacific Islander; 8.7 percent of the local residents had multi-racial backgrounds. Additionally, 3.1 percent of the population was of Hispanic decent.

 

Facilities, Utilities, Schools and Health Care

Water is derived from a dam on Isatkoak Lagoon and is stored in a tank. Most residents have piped water. Funds have been requested to serve remaining houses and to construct a second water reservoir. The member-owned Barrow Utilities & Electric Cooperative operates the water and sewage treatment plants, generates and distributes electric power, and distributes piped natural gas for home heating. The North Slope Borough provides all other utilities. Refuse collection services are provided by the North Slope Borough. The Barrow Power Plant is fueled by natural gas. Electricity is provided by Barrow Utilities & Electric Cooperative. There are 4 schools located in the community,  attended by 1,111 students. Local hospitals or health clinics include Samuel Simmonds Memorial Hospital North Slope Borough Health Clinic.  North Slope Borough Health Clinicis Primary Health Care facility. The hospital is a qualified Acute Care facility and State-certified Medevac Service. The Clinic is a qualified Emergency Care Center. NSB Search & Rescue provides Critical Care Air Ambulance Service. Specialized Care: NSB Substance Abuse Treatment Center (852-0260) NSB Community Counseling Center. Barrow is a large town/Regional Center it is part of the North Slope EMS Region. Emergency Services have coastal helicopter and floatplane access. Emergency service is provided by 911 Telephone Service volunteers and a health aide.  Auxiliary health care is provided by Borough Volunteer Fire Dept./EMS/Search & Rescue/Medevac (907-852-0234/6111).

 

Economy

Barrow is the economic center of the North Slope Borough, the city's primary employer, and numerous businesses provide support services to oil field operations. State and federal agencies also provide employment. The midnight sun has attracted tourism, and arts and crafts provide some cash income. In 2010, 4 residents held commercial fishing permits. Many residents rely upon subsistence food sources: whale, seal, polar bear, walrus, duck, caribou, grayling, and whitefish are harvested from the coast or nearby rivers and lakes.

The 2006-2010 American Community Survey (ACS) estimated 1,6681 residents as employed. The public sector employed 17.0%1 of all workers. The local unemployment rate was 21.4%1. The percentage of workers not in labor force was 33.2%1. The ACS surveys established that average median household income (in 2010 inflation-adjusted dollars) was $78,250 (MOE +/-$17,334)1. The per capita income (in 2010 inflation-adjusted dollars) was $25,528 (MOE +/-$3,321)1. About 14.5%1 of all residents had incomes below the poverty level. 

 

 

Transportation

Regularly-scheduled jet services provide Barrow's only year-round access. The state-owned Wiley Post-Will Rogers Memorial Airport serves as the regional transportation center for the borough. The airport has a 6,500' long by 150' wide asphalt runway. Marine and land transportation provide seasonal access.


Organizations with Local Offices

City - City of Barrow
P.O. Box 629
Barrow, AK 99723
Phone 907-852-5211
Fax 907-852-3529
E-mail 
isabel.okpeaha@cityofbarrow.org
Web http://www.cityofbarrow.org/ 

Electric Utility - Barrow Utilities and Electric Cooperative Incorporated
P.O. Box 449
Barrow, AK 99723
Phone 907-852-6166
Fax 907-852-6372
Web 
http://www.bueci.org/ 

Housing Authority - Tagiugmiullu Nunamiullu Housing Authority
P.O. Box 409
Barrow, AK 99723
Phone 907-852-7150
Fax 907-852-2038
E-mail 
daryl.kooley@tnha.net
Web http://www.tnha.info 

Media Newspaper - Arctic Sounder
500 W. international Airport Road, Suite F
Anchorage, AK 99518
Phone 907-770-0820
Fax 907-770-0822
E-mail 
info @reportalaska.com
Web http://thearcticsounder.com/ 

Other - Alaska Eskimo Whaling Commission
P.O. Box 570
Barrow, AK 99723
Phone 907-852-2392
Fax 907-852-2303
E-mail 
aewc@barrow.com, aewc1@barrow.com

Regional Health Corporation - North Slope Borough Health and Social Services Agency
P.O. Box 69
Barrow, AK 99723
Phone 907-852-0366
Fax 907-852-0389
E-mail 
ellen.sovalik@north-slope.org
Web http://www.north-slope.org/departments/health/ 

Regional Native Corporation - Arctic Slope Regional Corporation
P.O. Box 129
Barrow, AK 99723-0129
Phone 907-852-8633
Fax 907-852-5733
E-mail 
bquintavell@asrc.com
Web http://www.asrc.com 

Regional Native Non-Profit - Arctic Slope Native Association, Limited
P.O. Box 1232
Barrow, AK 99723
Phone 907-852-2762
Fax 907-852-2763
E-mail 
marie.carroll@arcticslope.org

Tribe - federally recognized - Inupiat Community of the Arctic Slope
P.O. Box 934
Barrow, AK 99723
Phone 907-852-4227
Fax 907-852-4246
E-mail 
aib@co.north-slope.ak.us

Tribe - federally recognized - Native Village of Barrow Inupiat Traditional Government
P.O. Box 1139
Barrow, AK 99723
Phone 907-852-4411
Fax 907-852-8844
E-mail 
tolemaun@nvbarrow.net; rbrower@nvbarrow.net
Web http://www.nvbarrow.net 

Village Corporation - Ukpeagvik Inupiat Corporation
P.O. Box 890
Barrow, AK 99723
Phone 907-852-4460
Fax 907-852-4459
E-mail 
info@ukpik.com
Web http://www.ukpik.com 
 

 

Regional Organizations

School District - North Slope Borough School District
P.O. Box 169
Barrow, AK 99723-0169
Phone 907-852-5311
Fax 907-852-9503
E-mail 
Peggy.Cowan@nsbsd.org
Web http://www.nsbsd.org/

Regional Native Corporation - Arctic Slope Regional Corporation
P.O. Box 129
Barrow, AK 99723-0129
Phone 907-852-8633
Fax 907-852-5733
E-mail 
bquintavell@asrc.com
Web http://www.asrc.com

Regional Native Health Corporation - North Slope Borough Health and Social Services Agency
P.O. Box 69
Barrow, AK 99723
Phone 907-852-0366
Fax 907-852-0389
E-mail 
ellen.sovalik@north-slope.org
Web http://www.north-slope.org/departments/health/

Regional Native Non-Profit - Arctic Slope Native Association, Limited
P.O. Box 1232
Barrow, AK 99723
Phone 907-852-2762
Fax 907-852-2763
E-mail 
marie.carroll@arcticslope.org

Native Housing Authority - Native Village of Barrow Inupiat Traditional Government
P.O. Box 1139
Barrow, AK 99723
Phone 907-852-4411
Fax 907-852-8844
E-mail 
tolemaun@nvbarrow.net; rbrower@nvbarrow.net
Web http://www.nvbarrow.net

 



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