Kotzebue (/ˈkɒtsəbjuː/ KOTS-ə-bew) or Kikiktagruk (Inupiaq: Qikiqtaġruk [qekeqtɑʁʐuk]) is a city in the Northwest Arctic Borough in the U.S. state of Alaska. It is the borough’s seat, by far its largest community and the economic and transportation hub of the subregion of Alaska encompassing the borough. The population of the city was 3,201 as of the 2010 census, up from 3,082 in 2000.
Kotzebue lies on a gravel spit at the end of the Baldwin Peninsula in the Kotzebue Sound. It is located at 66°53′50″N 162°35′8″W / 66.89722°N 162.58556°W / 66.89722; -162.58556 (66.897192, −162.585444), approximately 30 miles (48 km) from Noatak, Kiana, and other nearby smaller communities. It is 33 miles (53 km) north of the Arctic Circle on Alaska’s western coast.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 28.7 square miles (74 km), of which 27.0 square miles (70 km) is land, and 1.6 square miles (4.1 km), or 5.76%, is water.
Kotzebue is home to the NANA Regional Corporation, one of thirteen Alaska Native Regional Corporations created under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act of 1971 (ANCSA) in settlement of Alaska Native land claims.
Kotzebue is a gateway to Kobuk Valley National Park and other natural attractions of northern Alaska. A Northwest Arctic Heritage Center is located in the town to acclimate National Park Service travelers. Nearby Selawik National Wildlife Refuge also maintains office space in the town.
Kotzebue first appeared on the 1880 U.S. Census under its predecessor unincorporated Inuit village named “Kikiktagamute.” It did not appear again until 1910, then as Kotzebue. It formally incorporated in 1958.
As of the census of 2000, there were 3,082 people, 889 households, and 656 families residing in the city. The population density was 114.1 people per square mile (44.1/km²). There were 1,007 housing units at an average density of 37.3 per square mile (14.4/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 71.19% Native American, 19.47% White, 1.82% Asian, 0.32% Black or African American, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 0.78% from other races, and 6.36% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.17% of the population.
There were 889 households out of which 50.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.1% were married couples living together, 17.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.1% were non-families. 19.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 2.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.40 and the average family size was 3.93.
In the city, the age distribution of the population shows 39.8% under the age of 18, 8.5% from 18 to 24, 30.4% from 25 to 44, 17.2% from 45 to 64, and 4.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 26 years. For every 100 females, there were 102.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 104.5 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $57,163, and the median income for a family was $58,068. Males had a median income of $42,604 versus $36,453 for females. The per capita income for the city was $18,289. About 9.2% of families and 13.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 14.9% of those under age 18 and 6.0% of those age 65 or over.
Kotzebue Alaska neighborhoods include: Anchorage, Anchor Point, Chiniak, Chugiak, Clam Gulch, Cooper Landing, Delta Junction, Douglas, Eagle River, Eielson Afb, Elmendorf Afb, Fairbanks, Fort Richardson, Girdwood, Haines, Homer, Indian, Juneau, Kasilof, Kenai, Ketchikan, Kodiak, Metlakatla, Moose Pass, Nikolaevsk, Ninilchik, North Pole, Salcha, Seward, Sitka, Soldotna, Sterling, Tyonek, Wasilla