Government Hill is the oldest district in Anchorage. Named after a hill only 115 feet high, the neighborhood sits north of the core of downtown and is home to the Alaska Railroad Depot, which helped to create the residential part of the neighborhood. Though most residences in the area are now apartments in buildings with five units or more, the earliest homes were small bungalows built in the early 1900s.
The Elmendorf Air Force Base frames Government Hill along the northern edge and down the eastern border. Many residents walk to work on the base or in downtown Anchorage. A small shopping area is located off of East Loop Road, including a Tesoro gas station, an AT&T Office and two Asian restaurants. Government Hill Elementary School is located on East Bluff Drive near the Air Force base. Churches in the area include Calvary Baptist, Praise Temple Way Church and the Lighthouse Christian Fellowship. The Anchorage Curling Club has its rink right off of East Loop Road. Curling is a sport similar to shuffleboard but played on ice.
The Port of Anchorage is also considered part of Government Hill. It is on the western edge fronting Knik Arm, a tributary that flows into Cook Inlet and then the Gulf of Alaska. This is Alaska’s major shipping port, crucial for getting goods into the state’s interior, particularly the oilfields. Ship’s Creek winds along the southern edge of Government Hill, spilling into Knik Arm near the port. People have been known to get out their fishing poles during salmon season and actually catch a few along the creek.