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Burlington, Ontario

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Burlington, OntarioBurlington (Canada 2011 Census population 175,779), is a city located in Halton Region at the western end of Lake Ontario. Burlington is part of the Greater Toronto Area, and is also included in the Hamilton Census Metropolitan Area. Physically, Burlington lies between the north shore of Lake Ontario and the Niagara Escarpment. Economically, Burlington is strategically located near the geographic centre of the Golden Horseshoe, a densely populated and industrialized region home to over 8 million people.

Some of the city's attractions include Canada's Largest Ribfest, Sound of Music Festival, Burlington Art Centre, and Spencer Smith Park, all located near the city's municipal offices in the downtown core. Additionally, the city attracts hikers, birders and nature lovers due to the Royal Botanical Gardens located on the border with Hamilton, as well as its proximity to a part of the Niagara Escarpment in the north end of the city that includes the Iroquoian section of the Bruce Trail.

 

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History

Before pioneer settlement in the 19th century, the area was covered by the primeval forest that stretched between the provincial capital of York and the town of Hamilton, and was home to various First Nations peoples. In 1792, John Graves Simcoe, the first lieutenant governor of Upper Canada, named the western end of Lake Ontario "Burlington Bay" after the town of Bridlington in the East Riding of Yorkshire, England,. By the time land beside the bay was deeded to Captain Joseph Brant at the turn of the nineteenth century, the name "Burlington" was already in common use. With the completion of the local survey after the War of 1812, the land was opened for settlement. Early farmers prospered in the Burlington area because of the fertile soil and moderate temperatures. Produce from the farms was shipped out via the bustling docks of the lakeside villages of Port Nelson and Wellington Square, as well as Brown's Wharf in the nearby village of Port Flamborough (which was to become Aldershot). Lumber taken from the surrounding forests also competed for space on the busy docks. However, in the latter half of the 19th century, increased wheat production from Western Canada convinced local farmers to switch to fruit and vegetable production.

In 1874, Wellington Square and Port Nelson were incorporated into the Village of Burlington. However, the arrival of large steamships on the Great Lakes made the small docks of the local ports obsolete, and the increased use of railway is to ship goods marked the end of the commercial wharves. Farming still thrived though, and the resultant growth resulted in continued prosperity. By 1906, the town boasted both its own newspaper—the Burlington Gazette—as well as a town library and a local rail line that connected Burlington to nearby Hamilton. During the First World War, 300 local men volunteered for duty in the Canadian Expeditionary Force—38 did not return. In 1915, Burlington was incorporated into a town.

As more settlers arrived and cleared the land, cash crops replaced subsistence farming. Gradually, mixed farming and market gardens became the dominant form of agriculture, and in the early twentieth century the area was declared the Garden of Canada. The first peaches grown in Canada were cultivated in the Grindstone Creek watershed, which is located in the south-west part of the city. the farming tradition has passed down through the generations. Today over forty percent of the Grindstone Creek watershed is still devoted to farms, orchards and nurseries.

Following the Second World War, cheap electricity from nearby Niagara Falls and better transportation access due to the new (1939) Queen Elizabeth Way encouraged both light industry and families to move to Burlington. The population sky-rocketed as new homes were built, encouraging developers to build even more new homes. In 1962, Burlington annexed most of the Township of Nelson, as well as Aldershot, formerly a part of East Flamborough Township. By 1967, the last cash crop farm within the city had been replaced by the Burlington Mall. By 1974, with a population exceeding 100,000, Burlington was incorporated as a city. The extremely high rate of growth continued, and between 2001 and 2006, the population of Burlington grew by 9%, compared to Canada's overall growth rate of 5.4%. By 2006, the population topped 160,000. Continued high rates of growth are forecast as farmland north of Dundas Street (former Highway 5) and south of Highway #407 is developed into more suburban housing.

 

Geography and Climate

Burlington is located at the southwestern end of Lake Ontario, just to the north of Hamilton and the Niagara Peninsula, roughly in the geographic centre of the urban corridor known as the Golden Horseshoe. Burlington has a total land area of 187 km2(72 sq mi). The main urban area is located south of the Parkway Belt and Hwy. 407. The land north of this, and north Aldershot is used primarily for agriculture, rural residential and conservation purposes. The Niagara Escarpment, Lake Ontario and the sloping plain between the escarpment and the lake make up the land area of Burlington. The city is no longer a port; sailing vessels in the area are used for recreational purposes and moor at a 215 slip marina in LaSalle Park. The 2.2 km long Skyway Bridge is a prominent landmark. Burlington’s climate is humid continental Köppen climate classification Dfa with warm, humid summers and cold, somewhat drier winters. The climate is moderated by its proximity to Lake Ontario. Monthly mean temperatures range from 22.3 °C (72.3 °F) in July to −4.2 °C (24.5 °F) in January. The average annual precipitation is 878 millimetres (34.6 in) of rain and 109 centimetres (43 in) of snow.

Although it shares the temperate climate found in Southern Ontario, its proximity to Lake Ontario moderates winter temperatures and it also benefits from a sheltering effect of the Niagara Escarpment, allowing the most northerly tracts of Carolinian forest to thrive on the Escarpment that runs through western sections of city. Several species of flora and fauna usually found only in more southern climes have their only Canadian presence here including paw-paw, green dragon (Arisaema dracontium), tuckahoe (Peltandra virginica), American columbo (Frasera carolinensis), wall-rue (Asplenium ruta-muraria), plus the Louisiana waterthrush, the hooded warbler, the southern flying squirrel and the rare eastern pipistrelle. Near the visible promontory of Mount Nemo that rises some 200 m (650 ft) above the lake level, a "vertical forest" of white cedar clinging to the Escarpment face includes many small trees that are more than a thousand years old. Burlington Bay, the western end of Lake Ontario, is bounded on its western shore by a large sandbar, now called the Beach strip, that was deposited during the last ice age. A canal bisecting the sandbar allows ships access to Hamilton Harbour, which lies behind the sandbar. The Burlington Bay James N. Allan Skyway (part of the Queen Elizabeth Way), and the Canal Lift Bridge allow access over the canal.

Climate data for Burlington
MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDecYear
Record high °C (°F) 15.0
(59.0)
18.0
(64.4)
27.0
(80.6)
32.0
(89.6)
35.0
(95.0)
37.2
(99.0)
39.0
(102.2)
37.2
(99.0)
36.1
(97.0)
31.1
(88.0)
26.7
(80.1)
22.0
(71.6)
39.0
(102.2)
Average high °C (°F) −0.9
(30.4)
0.1
(32.2)
5.1
(41.2)
12.2
(54.0)
19.4
(66.9)
24.9
(76.8)
28.0
(82.4)
26.7
(80.1)
21.8
(71.2)
15.0
(59.0)
7.9
(46.2)
2.1
(35.8)
13.5
(56.3)
Daily mean °C (°F) −4.8
(23.4)
−3.9
(25.0)
0.9
(33.6)
7.2
(45.0)
13.8
(56.8)
19.3
(66.7)
22.3
(72.1)
21.4
(70.5)
16.8
(62.2)
10.4
(50.7)
4.4
(39.9)
−1.3
(29.7)
8.9
(48.0)
Average low °C (°F) −8.6
(16.5)
−7.8
(18.0)
−3.4
(25.9)
2.2
(36.0)
8.2
(46.8)
13.6
(56.5)
16.6
(61.9)
16.1
(61.0)
11.7
(53.1)
5.8
(42.4)
0.7
(33.3)
−4.7
(23.5)
4.2
(39.6)
Record low °C (°F) −29.4
(−20.9)
−27
(−16.6)
−23.9
(−11.0)
−13.9
(7.0)
−2.8
(27.0)
1.1
(34.0)
5.6
(42.1)
3.0
(37.4)
−1.1
(30.0)
−7.8
(18.0)
−16.1
(3.0)
−27
(−16.6)
−29.4
(−20.9)
Precipitation mm (inches) 67.1
(2.642)
57.1
(2.248)
69.6
(2.74)
73.2
(2.882)
80.4
(3.165)
70.8
(2.787)
71.6
(2.819)
76.8
(3.024)
89
(3.5)
73.8
(2.906)
77.9
(3.067)
71.5
(2.815)
878.8
(34.598)
Rainfall mm (inches) 32.0
(1.26)
33.1
(1.303)
53.3
(2.098)
69.9
(2.752)
80.4
(3.165)
70.8
(2.787)
71.6
(2.819)
76.8
(3.024)
89.0
(3.504)
73.8
(2.906)
72.5
(2.854)
47.6
(1.874)
770.7
(30.343)
Snowfall cm (inches) 35.2
(13.86)
24.1
(9.49)
16.4
(6.46)
3.3
(1.3)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
5.4
(2.13)
23.9
(9.41)
108.2
(42.6)
Avg. precipitation days (≥ 0.2 mm) 11.8 9.3 11.1 11.6 11.0 10.3 9.6 9.4 10.7 10.4 12.9 12.1 130.2
Avg. rainy days (≥ 0.2 mm) 4.8 4.2 8.2 10.9 11.0 10.3 9.6 9.4 10.7 10.4 11.8 7.4 108.7
Avg. snowy days (≥ 0.2 cm) 7.7 6.0 3.5 0.9 0 0 0 0 0 0 1.4 5.6 25.1
Source: Environment Canada.  

 

Demographics

Age

According to the 2011 census, Burlington's population was 175,779. As of the 2006 census, 48% of residents were male and 52% female. Minors (individuals under the age of 18) made up 24.5% of the population (almost identical to the national average of 24.4%), and pensioners (age 65+) numbered 15.4% (significantly higher than the national average 13.7%). This older population was also reflected in Burlington's average age of 40.3, which was higher than the Canadian average of 39.5.

Race and ethnic origins

As recorded in the same census, 91.04% of the population was white. Other groups include South Asian: 3.1%, mixed race: 1.5%, black: 1.5%, and Chinese: 1.3 The top eight ethnic origins from the 2006 census are listed in the accompanying table. Percentages add up to more than 100% because respondents were able to choose more than one ethnicity.

Religion

In the 2001 Canadian census, 78% of Burlington residents identified themselves as Christian. Of these, approximately 41% claimed adherence to one of the mainstream Protestant churches or were Anglican, 32% were Roman Catholic, and the remaining 27% belonged to other denominations such as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Mormons), the Ukrainian Catholic Church, and various Orthodox denominations. Of the remaining 22% of the population that did not identify themselves as Christian, 16.6% identified themselves as following no religion, 1.0% were Muslim, 0.7% Sikh, 0.5% Hindu, 0.4% Jewish, 0.3% Buddhist, and 0.1% Pagan.

Economy

Burlington's economic strength is the diversity of its economic base, mainly achieved because of its geography, proximity to large industries in southern Ontario (Canada's largest consumer market), its location within the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) and proximity to Hamilton, and its transportation infrastructure. The city has a robust economy with potential for future growth - it is located at the hub of the Golden Horseshoe, is largely driven by both the automotive and manufacturing sectors. The city has historically been a destination with a high quality of life, being most recently named the 2nd best city in Canada in which to live.

No single employer or job sector dominates Burlington’s economy. The leading industrial sectors, in terms of employment, are food processing, packaging, electronics, motor vehicle/transportation, business services, chemical/pharmaceutical and environmental. The top five private sector employers in Burlington are Fearmans Pork Inc, Cogeco Cable, Evertz Microsystems, Boehringer Ingelheim and EMC2. The largest public sector employers in the city are the City of Burlington, the Halton District School Board, the Halton Catholic District School Board and Joseph Brant Memorial Hospital. The Burlington Mall and Mapleview Centre are popular malls within the city. The many summer festivals in the city, include Canada's Largest Ribfest, and the Burlington Sound of Music Festival which also attract many visitors.

 

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Media and journalism

Television stations

Burlington is primarily served by media based in Toronto (other than those noted below), as it is geographically located in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).

  • TVCogeco from the studio in the Cogeco Cable Headquarters at Harvester Road & Burloak Drive.
  • Crossroads Television System (CITS-TV) is based in Burlington with studios on the North Service Road near the junction of the QEW, 403 and 407.
  • Hamilton based Television station CHCH-TV serves Hamilton, Halton and Niagara, thus including Burlington.

Radio

Burlington EducationOne radio station, FM 107.9 CJXY, is licensed to Burlington and another, FM 94.7 CHKX, to "Hamilton/Burlington." Both presently broadcast from studios in Hamilton; CJXY, indeed, brands itself "Hamilton's ONLY Rock Station." Burlington listeners are also served by stations licensed to Toronto and Hamilton and other nearby radio markets like Buffalo, NY.

 Education

Burlington's public elementary and secondary schools are part of the Halton District School Board. Burlington's Catholic elementary and secondary schools are part of the Halton Catholic District School Board. French public elementary and secondary schools are part of the Conseil Scolaire de District du Centre Sud Ouest (CSDCSO) and French catholic elementary and secondary schools are part of the Conseil scolaire de district catholique Centre-Sud (CSDCCS). Several private schools are also available in the city.

Elementary schools

There are 28 public elementary schools and 13 Roman Catholic elementary schools in Burlington.

Public

  • Aldershot School
  • Alexander's Public School
  • Brant Hills Public School
  • Bruce T. Lindley Public School
  • Burlington Central Elementary
  • Central Public School
  • C.H. Norton Public School
  • Charles R. Beaudoin Public School
  • Clarksdale Public School
  • Dr. Charles Best Public School
  • Florence Meares Public School
  • Frontenac Public School
  • Glenview Public School
  • John T. Tuck Public School
  • King's Road Public School
  • Lakeshore Public School
  • Maplehurst Public School
  • Mohawk Gardens Public School
  • Orchard Park Public School
  • Paul A. Fisher Public School
  • Pauline Johnson Public School
  • Pineland Public School
  • Rolling Meadows Public School
  • Ryerson Public School
  • Sir E. MacMillan Public School
  • Tecumseh Public School
  • Tom Thomson Public School
  • Kilbride Public School
  • John William Boich Public School

Catholic

  • Ascension Catholic Elementary School
  • Canadian Martyrs Catholic Elementary School
  • Holy Rosary Catholic Elementary School
  • Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Elementary School
  • St. Christopher's Catholic Elementary School
  • St. Elizabeth Seton's Catholic Elementary School
  • St. Gabriel's Catholic Elementary School
  • St. John's Catholic Elementary School
  • St. Mark's Catholic Elementary School
  • St. Patrick's Catholic Elementary School
  • St. Paul's Catholic Elementary School
  • St. Raphael's Catholic Elementary School
  • St. Timothy's Catholic Elementary School
 

High schools

There are seven high schools and three Catholic high schools in Burlington.

 Public

  • Aldershot School (1964) Sports Team: Lions
  • Burlington Central High School (1922) Sports Team: Trojans
  • Gary Allan High School Burlington Campus - Adult Learners School
  • Lester B. Pearson High School (1977) Sports Team: Patriots
  • M.M. Robinson High School (1963) Sports Team: Guts, Glory, Ram
  • Nelson High School (1957) Sports Team: Lords
  • Robert Bateman High School (2004) Sports Team: Wild

 Catholic

  • Assumption Secondary School (1977) Sports Team: Crusaders
  • Notre Dame Secondary School (1989) Sports Team: Fighting Irish
  • Corpus Christi Catholic Secondary School (2008) Sports Team: Longhorns

Private

  • Fern Hill School
  • Halton Waldorf School
  • Burlington Christian Academy
  • Burlington Montessori Preschool
  • Glenn Arbour Academy
  • Fairview Glen Montessori
  • Hillfield Strathallan (Hamilton)
  • Summerhill Day School
  • Trinity Christian School
  • John Calvin Christian School
  • Pine School

Universities

  • McMaster University DeGroote School of Business - Ron Joyce Centre opened in September 2010 and offers MBA and Executive Management programs.
  • Australian university Charles Sturt University has had a study centre in Burlington since 2005 and offers programs in Master of International Education, Bachelor of Early Childhood Studies and Master of Business Administration.

Colleges

  • Canadian Therapeutic College (affiliate of the Canadian College of Dental Health).

  

Sites of Interest

Burlington is home to the Royal Botanical Gardens, which has the world’s largest lilac collection. Ontario's botanical garden and National Historic Site of Canada features over 2,700 acres (11 km2) of gardens and nature sanctuaries, including four outdoor display gardens, the Mediterranean Garden under glass, three on-site restaurants, the Gardens' Gift Shop, and festivals. There are 115 parks and 580 ha of parkland within the city, some of the more popular being Lasalle Park located in Aldershot and Spencer Smith Park newly renovated with an observatory, outdoor pond, water jet play area and restaurant also on the shore of Lake Ontario. Lasalle Park, is owned by the city of Hamilton but is leased by Burlington, which also assumes responsibility for maintenance.

Mount Nemo Conservation Area is the only area in Burlington operated by the Halton Region Conservation Authority although their main headquarters are located in Lowville in north Burlington. Several conservation areas are minutes away and feature year round activities. Bronte Creek Provincial Park is located along our eastern boundary and features a campground, and year round recreational activities and events. Kerncliff Park, in an abandoned quarry on the boundary with Waterdown, is a naturalized area on the lip of the Niagara Escarpment. The Bruce Trail runs through the park, at many points running along the edge of the cliffs, providing a clear overlook of Burlington, the Burlington Skyway Bridge, Hamilton, and Oakville. On a clear day, one can see the CN Tower in Toronto, approximately 50 kilometres (31 mi) from the park.

The Burlington Art Centre shows various exhibits throughout the year from local to national and houses the largest collection of Canadian ceramics. The Centre’s exhibition spaces, which feature new exhibitions every eight to ten weeks, are fully accessible and are free of charge to visitors. The Joseph Brant Museum and Ireland House are also popular attractions. Joseph Brant Museum has ongoing exhibits on the history of Burlington, the Eileen Collard Costume Collection, Captain Joseph Brant and the visible storage gallery. Ireland House at Oakridge Farm is a history museum depicting family life from the 1850s to the 1920s.

Burlington offers four indoor and two outdoor pools, four splash pads, nine ice pads, six community centres and nine golf courses. Some of the best hiking in the world can be done in the local sections of the Bruce Trail and the Niagara Escarpment, which is a UNESCO designated World Biosphere Reserve, as well as along the Waterfront Trail that runs along the northern shore of Lake Ontario. There are no large-scale stadiums, arenas, theatre or opera companies in Burlington. Construction is underway to add 2 more ice surfaces to Appleby Ice Centre to create a 4 pad facility opening in fall of 2010. In 2008, city council approved the construction of a Performing Arts Centre on Locust Street, in the downtown core. The Performing Arts Centre is designed by Diamond and Schmitt Architects who also designed Toronto's Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts. This 750 seat facility opened in 2011. Many annual free festivals take place in Spencer Smith Park, including Canada's Largest Ribfest and the Sound of Music Festival, Canada Day, Children's Festival and Lakeside Festival of Lights. There is also the semi-annual prix fixe Taste of Burlington dining event.

Spencer Smith Park The WWII Navy Memorial Burlington Mall City Hall, on Brant Street Brant Street, downtown Joseph Brant Memorial Hospital, downtown
Spencer Smith Park, downtown, Burlington The WWII Navy Memorial in Spencer Smith Park Burlington Mall City Hall, on Brant Street Brant Street, downtown Joseph Brant Memorial Hospital, downtown

Malls and shopping

  • Appleby Mall - a mall located at Appleby Line and New Street. The mall has been recently renovated as an outdoor box store centre.
  • Burlington Mall - a one-storey mall at Guelph Line and Fairview Street, opened in 1968, with several renovations completed at various intervals over the years.
  • Mapleview Centre - a two-storey mall, opened in 1990, with many upscale and destination stores Banana Republic, Guess?, XXI Forever, H&M, Bath & Body Works and Pink by Victoria's Secret) at Queen Elizabeth Way and Fairview Street, recently expanded in the Fall of 2009 with BCBGMAXAZRIA, GUESS by Marciano, Zara, Coach, Aritzia and Sephora.

 

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Information and images courtesy of Wikipedia.org

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