Best Cities 2010: Anchorage, AK

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Best Cities 2010: Anchorage, AK

Anchorage is great for outdoorsy families, with beautiful mountain and glacier scenery and 120 miles of paved bike and multi-use trails

City: Anchorage 

State: Alaska

Best Cities Overall Rank: 51

About Anchorage:

You can see six mountain ranges — Chugach, Kenai, Talkeetna, Tordrillo, Aleutian, Alaska — from Anchorage. There are also 60 glaciers within 50 miles of the city.

With more than 120 miles of paved bike and multi-use trails, and 90 miles of non-paved hiking trails, Anchorage is ideal for outdoorsy types. You can also view unique events here like the famous Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.

County: Anchorage 

Population: 279,243

Official website for city visitors’ bureau/city: Visitor’s bureau website 

Newspaper with the largest circulation: Anchorage Daily News 

Anchorage blogs:

Scribbit: Motherhood in Alaska

Alaska Daily News’ Play Blog

The Mudflats

Anchorage‘s Facebook page: Follow Anchorage on Facebook 

Anchorage‘s Twitter page: Follow Anchorage on Twitter 


Education rank: 24

High School graduation rate 2008: 64.9%

Blue Ribbon Schools, 2003-2009: 2

Blue Ribbon Schools per 100,000 people: 0.72

NEAYC-accredited preschools: 4

NAEYC schools per 100,000 people: 1.43

NAEP State proficiency reading, grade 8: 259

Pupil/Teacher Ratio: 18.19

Total Expenditures Per Student: $11,924


Health rank: 5

Quality children’s hospitals: 1

Hospitals per 100,000 people: 0.36

Quality Pediatricians: 4

Quality Pediatricians per 100,000: 1.43

Average number of Unhealthy Air Quality days between 2006-2008, by county: 0


Safety rank: 81

Violent Crimes, 2008: 2647

Violent Crime Rate per 100,000: 947.92

Sex Offenders: 1012

Sex Offenders per 100,000: 362.41


Economy rank: 7           

Travel time to work, 2006-2008, in minutes: 18.1 

Percent of labor force unemployed, January 2010: 8.3           

Best Performing Cities Job Index: 663.69

Median Home List Price: $270,000                                 

Recreation Rank:  4

Parkland acreage, 2008 (includes pools and playgrounds): 11,600           

Parkland per 100,000: 4,154.08