The settlement of Ikerasak – “the sound” – is located on an island with the same name in Krajak Fiord, some 40 southeast of Uummannaq. The settlement is the second largest and southernmost in the Uummannaq area.
The settlement’s structure is characterised by an extended industrial and port area that winds along the coast, and the centre and residential areas are located behind this are.
Provisions and subareas
The general provisions apply to all subareas of the municipalities in towns, settlements and open country areas. The provisions are general and do not consider the local conditions in the subareas.
The overall provisions for each subarea are the basis for the municipality"s granting of area allotments and building permits.
As a minimum, the current level of service and housing in Ikerasak is to be maintained. The fishing trade is to be strengthened regularly, and expansion possibilities are to be made available. The size of residential areas should match the actual trends. Because of the size of the settlement, housing standards should be maintained and improved regularly, and old and empty houses (including peat houses) are to be used actively – among other things, in the light of the demand for workshops and community facilities. The conditions for children and youth should be given high priority, e.g. by separating the kindergarten from the service house and by improving the recreational facilities.
Population in Ikerasak was in 2006 at 279 inhabitants. From 2012 the population was at 223 inhabitants and has in 2018 risen to 242 inhabitants.
The settlements of Uummannaq total 509 homes (2010 figures). In 2017, the settlements numbered 367 households and a total of 972 inhabitants. This corresponds to an average household size of 2.7 persons per household.
Future residential development is to extend outwards from the two existing residential areas, and a new residential area has been zoned in the southernmost part of the settlement, and may be put to use in the long term. The remaining capacity of these three areas is considered sufficient, corresponding to around 105 homes.
Housing mainly consists of single-family houses of varying size. Many houses are in need of repair and quite a few are empty.
Because of its location, the settlement offers great conditions for fishing, sealing and whaling all year round. Seals, Greenland halibut, catfish, reindeer and musk oxen are caught. Fishing for Greenland halibut, which is received at Royal Greenland’s production facility, is of growing importance. The number of employees at the production facility ranges from two to 25 in the course of a season. In 2013, trading at the facility was closed in several instances because the unsafe winter ice made it impossible to transport the Greenland halibut by snowmobile or dog sledge. In the summer, the fish is collected by freighters.
Ikerasak features two small quays – one by the fish factory at the northern end of the settlement and a schooner quay by the bay in the middle of the settlement. Here, you also find a port for small boats with a pontoon bridge. Along the winding coastline are several bays where you can make fast and haul dinghies. Naalakkersuisut has designated two port authority areas; one next to the quayside at the fish factory and a smaller area next to the marina.
Jobs in the settlement relate to service, shops, the school, family day care, the laundry, the retirement home, the supply plants, the different municipal activities and tourism. The seven settlements in the Uummannaq district had a total unemployment rate of 6.7% in 2015, which is lower than for the town Uummannaq (7.8%). The Uummannaq settlements, as well as the Ilulissat settlements, both have a total unemployment rate of 6.7%, which is Avannaata Kommunia's lowest. The unemployment rate is therefore also lower than both the municipal average (9.1%) and the national average (9.1%).
In the town plan, the remaining capacity for industry and port facilities is around 3,000 m².
There is a helistop in the southern part of the settlement. Other means of transport primarily include dinghies and small boats. In the winter, dog sledges and snowmobiles are important, running on the sledge track towards the east.
There are no paved roads, and the road structure consists of a north-south-going wheel track from the port and the residential area in the north to the helistop and the dump in the south. From the wheel track, minor side roads spread out towards the school, houses and around the lake. Several roads are more like paths.
The technical supply is handled by Nukissiorfiit. The settlement features a power plant and tank installations located on the shore, in the settlement centre. Water supply is provided by means of an all-year pipeline that runs from a lake north of the settlement to several bottling houses. Houses are heated using private oil burners. The settlement is unsewered, and night soil is collected in drums and discharged into the sea with ramps. Day-time refuse and metal scrap are deposited at the dump in the south of the island.
Telecommunications are handled by TELE Greenland A/S.
The service building contains a day-care centre and a municipal office.
Ikerasak’s elementary school (Atuarfik Ole Løvstrøm) numbers around 35 pupils in forms 1 through 9.
The church was established as a school chapel in 1936, but fitted out as a church in 1980. The old cemetery is located next to the school, whereas a more recent cemetery is located half a kilometre south of the settlement, facing the coast.
The following buildings are designated preservation-worthy: (B-49) office from 1854, (B-57/55) integrated warehouses from 1850/1898, (B-60) trade manager’s house from 1909, (B-120) and the church from 1937. Along with the more recent warehouses (B-54) from 1941 and (B-56) from 1945, the preservation-worthy buildings constitute one preservation-worthy building environment. The peat wall house (B-890) near the church is proposed to be designated preservation-worthy.
The settlement’s village hall provides the settings for part of the cultural and recreational activities, and there is a soccer field near the school. In the winter, the small lake in the northern part of the settlement is used for ball games. Furthermore, a range of associations arrange different activities, and the area offers plenty of opportunities for excursions or fishing.