1st Class City
in the Kenai Peninsula Borough
- Area Type
- Current Population
- Population Comment
- 2013 DCCED Certified Estimate
- Pronunciation/Other Names
- (soul daht' nuh)
- Census Designated Place (CDP)
- Borough/Census Area FIPS Code
- Place FIPS
Election, Recording, and Judicial Districts
- Senate District
- House District
- Judicial District
- Recording District
Facilities and Amenities
- Municipal Facilities & Utilities
- Piped Water, Piped Sewer, Police, Animal Control, Airport, Sports Center/Ice Arena, Library, Parks, Roads, Campgrounds, Visitors Information Center, Soldotna Community Memorial Park
Geography and Climate
- Soldotna is on the Kenai Peninsula, 150 highway miles south of Anchorage, at the junction of the Sterling and Kenai Spur Highways. It lies 10 miles inland from Cook Inlet and borders the Kenai River.
- Winter temperatures range from 6 to 24 °F; summers range from 45 to 66 °F. Average annual precipitation is 17 inches.
- Community Map Available
- Sq Mi Land
- Sq Mi Water
History and Culture
- The peninsula has historically been the home of Kenaitze Indians and was developed by non-Natives for its rich resources, including fish, timber, and oil. Soldotna was named for a nearby stream. The name comes either from the Russian word for "soldier" or a Native word meaning "stream fork." The first homesteaders were World War II veterans who were given a 90-day preference over non-veterans in selecting and filing for property in 1947. That same year, the Sterling Highway right-of-way was constructed from Cooper Landing to Kenai. Soldotna was the site of the bridge crossing the Kenai River. A post office opened in 1949, with stores and a community center shortly thereafter. Soldotna continued to develop because of its strategic location at the Sterling-Kenai Spur Highway junction. In 1957, oil was discovered in the Swanson River region, bringing new growth and development. Soldotna was incorporated as a city in 1960.
- The Kenai River offers top trophy king salmon fishing during June and July. A 97 pound 4 ounce world-record king salmon was taken from these waters in 1985, and catching kings of over 60 pounds is not uncommon here. The Central Peninsula Sports Center provides an ice rink, racquetball courts, weight room, and meeting facilities.
- Federally Recognized Tribe
- Incorporation Type
- 1st Class City
- Public Education
- Not permitted to provide this service.
- Planning, Platting and Land Use Regulation
- May be permitted to exercise the powers in accordance with AS 29.40.
- Property Tax Powers
- May tax up to 30 mills, except where a higher levy is necessary to avoid default on debt. Voter approval is not required under State law; however, stricter limitations can be imposed at the local level.
- Sales Tax Powers
- No limit on the rate of levy of sales taxes, but voter approval is required.
- Other Powers Not Prohibited
- May exercise other powers not prohibited by law.
- City Council or Assembly Composition and Apportionment
- 6 members elected at-large, except the council may provide for election other than at-large.
- Election and Term of Mayor
- Elected at large for a 3-year term, unless a different term not to exceed 4 years is provided by ordinance.
- Vote by Mayor
- May vote to break a tie vote on the city council.
- Veto Power of the Mayor
- Has veto power, except veto is not permitted of ordinance prohibiting posession of alcohol.
- Power of Eminent Domain
- Permitted by statute.
- Ability to Attain Home-Rule Status
- Voters may adopt home-rule charter.
- The Soldotna Municipal Airport provides facilities for charter services and local air traffic. The nearby Kenai Municipal Airport, located 10 miles away, offers scheduled flights and float plane facilities. Seaplanes can also land at Mackeys Lakes. There are four additional private landing strips in Soldotna and a heliport for medical emergencies at Central Peninsula General Hospital. The Sterling Highway provides access to Alaska's road system. While Soldotna has an airport, there are no regular commercial flights available between Soldotna and Anchorage.
- State Ferry
- Cargo Barge
- Road Connection