Trends 2016: Peninsula cities promote, support tourism industry

Tue, 03/29/2016 - 14:27

While officials from the Kenai Peninsula’s five cities would not label tourism as critical to local economies, they say it is a healthy supplement.

Tax revenue from tourism-related businesses such as guiding, lodging, food service and retail raked in more than $600 million in 2015 for...

Trends 2016: Kenai's sales growing after 2009 decline, lead by retail

Tue, 03/29/2016 - 14:27

Trends in Kenai’s gross sales and property taxes recorded by the Kenai Peninsula Economic Development District (KPEDD) show that since 2008 the city of Kenai has been moving toward a trade-centered economy.

According to KPEDD’s 2015 Situations and Prospects report, Kenai’s property tax...

Trends 2016: Kenai Peninsula agriculture fastest growing in state

Tue, 03/29/2016 - 14:25

The Kenai Peninsula has one of the fastest growing agricultural industries in the state.

Whether measuring expansion through rising direct to consumer sales, acreage acquirements or crop variety, local farmers are making major strides in the sector.

“If it wasn’t before, the western...

Trends 2016: Local farmers develop markets for their products

Tue, 03/29/2016 - 14:24

Growing in a green industry means Kenai Peninsula farmers have had to plow their own way.

Producers are tasked with developing new market places, and finding consumers for their crops, which takes some creativity.

“Any beginning farmer in Alaska is going to face a certain amount of...

Trends 2016: Peninsula small businesses find their niches

Tue, 03/29/2016 - 12:40

While the state is working on cuts to its budget, small businesses on the Kenai Peninsula should not face similar struggles, depending on the niche they plan to serve.

The climate for the small business is holding steady at positive, said Bryan Zak, the Southwest regional director for the...

Trends 2016: Kenai Peninsula tourism outpaces state

Tue, 03/29/2016 - 12:41

2015 was a record year for the Kenai Peninsula’s tourism industry, which may well prove to be a boon for local economies hard hit by financial strains trickling down from the state now or in the near future.

Guided land tours jumped 26 percent from 2014; guided water excursions 7.8 percent...

Trends 2016: Cook Inlet producers continue with scheduled plans

Tue, 03/29/2016 - 12:41

Though oil and gas construction spending around the state is predicted to drop, Cook Inlet is somewhat shielded by smaller producers’ investments.

Most of the Cook Inlet producers are smaller companies than those that operate on the North Slope and are planning to be here for the long term...

Trends 2016: Central Peninsula Hospital continues expansion

Tue, 03/29/2016 - 12:41

Over the past six months, Central Peninsula Hospital has made several moves to expand and modernize its facilities and services.

A long-awaited new space for specialty practices, more imaging equipment and a new transitional housing project are some of the investments the Central Peninsula...

Trends 2016: Despite state downturn, peninsula economy looks to stay steady

Tue, 03/29/2016 - 12:40

Though the economy looks grim elsewhere in the state, the Kenai Peninsula’s diverse economy has somewhat shielded local employment.

While the state faces budget cuts and employee layoffs and the oil and gas industries stall, employment in other sectors of Alaska’s economy has grown...

Trends 2016: Peninsula housing more affordable than most of state

Tue, 03/29/2016 - 14:23

Although the outright price for homes is cheaper in Fairbanks, buying a home may be more affordable overall in the Kenai Peninsula Borough.

The average price of a home on the peninsula in the first half of 2015 was $265,912, as compared to Fairbanks’ $239,413, according to a December 2015...