Beaver Creek
Burwash Landing
Dawson City
Destruction Bay
Haines Junction
Old Crow
Pelly Crossing
Ross River
Watson Lake

Economic Activity and Development

The community of Dawson City is visionary, creative, and entrepreneurial and boasts a clear vision of its future. The Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in, City of Dawson, Yukon Government, and community organizations work together to create a business climate that promotes opportunities for everyone to succeed.

A century ago, in 1898, Dawson City was the centre of the Klondike Gold Rush boasting telephones, running water, steam heat, steamboat services, and a wide range of elaborate hotels, theatres and dance halls and a population reaching up to 25,000 people.

Today the community of Dawson City is still a gold mining centre, with close to 100 placer miner families currently operating in the Klondike region.  However, the main economic activity is tourism, based on the community's colourful past and historical importance.

Well-established as a vibrant arts community, Dawson is host to countless festivals and events, which contributes significantly to Dawson’s economic activity.

"Placer mining is a technique by which gold is removed from gravel using water and gravity – harmful chemicals are not used in placer gold recovery.  It has a rich and valiant history – steeped in the stories of gold seekers from around the globe and their adventures working the ancient stream beds of the Klondike. The placer mining industry is founded on family-operated businesses – a way of life that continues today."

~ Klondike Place Miners Association

For business investors, Dawson City boasts exceptional resources, rich with potential, including:

  • An excellent quality of life
  • A skilled and well-educated workforce
  • A supportive, and responsive government
  • Well-developed infrastructure
  • Northern expertise in mining, telecommunications, construction and tourism 
  • Solid partnership with Tr'ondëk Hwëch'in self-governing First Nation 
  • Excellent funding and incentive programs

Sector Strengths in Dawson City

  • Mining & Exploration
  • Tourism
  • Government Services
  • Arts & Culture
  • Innovation & Technology
  • Forestry
  • Film and Sound Industry

"Traditional activities are also an important part of the economy and lifestyle of First Nations people in the Dawson City area. A significant number of people hunt and fish to supply some of their families' food needs."

~ Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in.

Local initiatives supporting economic activity in Dawson City:

  • Integrated Community Sustainability Plan
    After the Gold Rush: the Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in and City of Dawson Integrated Community Sustainability Plan (ICSP) was developed in partnership by the Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in and the City of Dawson.
  • Official Community Plan
    This Official Community Plan (OCP) bylaw is the main policy document for the Town of the City of Dawson. It outlines the goals and policies that are used to guide decision making on planning and land use management. 
  • Heritage Management Plan
    Provides a vision for the management of Dawson City's Heritage resources. 
  • Klondike Development Organization
    A partnership of City of Dawson, Dawson City Chamber of Commerce, Klondike Visitors Association, Dawson City Arts Society and Chief Isaac Inc.
  • Chief Isaac Incorporated 
    Chief Isaac Inc. has established local businesses to employ First Nations people. The company has operations in property management and rentals, janitorial and security services, and general freight.
  • Dawson City Chamber of Commerce- enhances business growth and economic prosperity in Dawson City and the surrounding area.

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