Peaks Island Population 2024

What is the Population of Peaks Island?

The Island has an official population of 858 as of 2017. The island's population, however, increases drastically in the summer by about 2000-4000 souls due to seasonal workers and tourists that frequent the island for commercial and leisure opportunities.

What is Peaks Island?

Peaks Island is considered the largest island in Casco Bay, Maine by population size. It makes up part of the city of Portland and is located nearly 5km from the downtown core. The island has many functional facilities, including an elementary school, a police station, and a library. It is the only island in the bay that allows travelers to drive in and out of the island using small automobiles.

Peaks Island is highly famous among tourists but is surprisingly a bustling town. Many local businesses thrive in the economy of the island, including grocery stores, ice cream parlors, and restaurants. It is a great place for golf cart rentals and art galleries and even to do some canoeing and kayaking. The Fifth Maine Regiment Museum and the Umbrella Cover Museum are the most frequented places on the island for tourists to learn about the local area and the history of Maine and the bay.

While the island is tiny when compared to the rest of the cities throughout the United States, there have been 6 major secession attempts to remove themselves from the city of Portland and become recognized as their municipality. The earliest one was in 1883, and the most recent effort was tried between 2004-2011. Many residents are displeased with the current state of affairs, as they are counted as part of a larger metropolis. As such, property owners within the island pay 200% more tax on their properties when compared to other places of their size. As of June 13, 2006, about 57% of residents were for secession, showing that there is a majority sentiment to break away from the city of Portland.

As expected, the city council had opposed secession, unanimously. The council and the group had failed to negotiate terms even after arguments ensued both publicly and privately. Various other issues opposed this plan in the following years, including not following the legal process, and residents losing faith in their secession votes and subsequently not attending.

Peaks Island Interesting Facts

During World War II, Peaks Island was famously known for having a huge military installation that was a focal point for the defense. The Battery Steele, which was the largest structure within the fortification, housed a couple of 406mm guns, able to take out any enemy vessels and armor at a distance. When the guns were first tested, it was said that the windows on the opposite side of the island had broken and fragmented into pieces, showing the large amount of power generated from firing the cannons. Peaks Island was also home to the Gem Theater, which was destroyed in a fire in 1934, which had also engulfed the Union House Hotel.