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Old 07-11-2015, 08:39 PM
 
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Is there a particular reason Southern Ontario, and GTA has greater population than other parts Canada, even along the coast?

I ask because if you look at the USA; which shares many things in common with Canada in terms of settlement, immigration which in turn will affect urbanization and development, the population centers are located near the coasts. The northeast corridor, Florida, California, have most of the people. It seem natural for people to gather close to the coast since antiquity.

Why are Vancouver, BC, or Montreal, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick not the biggest population centers in Canada? What made people gravitate to Southern Ontario, and GTA? Is it the because it is the southern most point of Canada, and thereby has more mild weather? Does it have anything to do with being closest to the breadbasket that is the US midwest?
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Old 07-11-2015, 11:29 PM
 
Location: Windsor, Ontario, Canada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJ Brazen_3133 View Post
Is there a particular reason Southern Ontario, and GTA has greater population than other parts Canada, even along the coast?

I ask because if you look at the USA; which shares many things in common with Canada in terms of settlement, immigration which in turn will affect urbanization and development, the population centers are located near the coasts. The northeast corridor, Florida, California, have most of the people. It seem natural for people to gather close to the coast since antiquity.

Why are Vancouver, BC, or Montreal, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick not the biggest population centers in Canada? What made people gravitate to Southern Ontario, and GTA? Is it the because it is the southern most point of Canada, and thereby has more mild weather? Does it have anything to do with being closest to the breadbasket that is the US midwest?

We are grouped on the coast.

.............Of the Great Lakes.

The Atlantic seaboard of the US is 2,069 miles. The Pacific is 7,623 miles.....Alaska's Pacific coast making up 5,580 of those miles. Not including Hawaii or Alaska, the Pacific coast is 1,293 miles.

Canada borders 5,200 miles of Great Lakes coastline, not including the St. Lawrence River.


Southern Ontario offered settlers much more very rich, fertile soil in comparison to the Atlantic Provinces. The trade route of the Great Lakes allowed people to more easily move their goods by boat/barge, rather than poor wagon trails. And of course, a milder climate not only helps people themselves, but provides a longer growing season. The major forts and trading posts of Canada and the US's fur trade were also along these waterways, and the people followed.
Southern Ontario also offered ground more accommodating to railway infrastructure, spurring the development of towns, villages, and cities.

I doubt it had anything to do with America's bread basket, since at the time of settlement, America's bread basket really didn't exist. It was unsettled prairie land.

That's my basic thoughts on the matter, anyhow. Could be wrong.

Last edited by Magnatomicflux; 07-12-2015 at 12:01 AM..
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Old 07-11-2015, 11:54 PM
 
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For much of Canada's history Montreal was the top city with Toronto coming on second. This reversed after the rise of Quebec nationalism as Montreal changed from a totally bilingual city to one where French predominated, and Toronto's growth began to outpace Montreal's as immigration to Canada continued.

I'd add to what Magnatomicflux said, that thru the Saint Lawrence river Montreal and Toronto are in a sense on the east coast - the St. Lawrence having been navigable as far as Montreal, until canals allowed shipping to the Great Lakes. Vancouver on the west coast comes in third in population. So in a sense canads's population is on the coasts.

I have wondered why a city like Halifax did not play more prominance in Canada given its proximity to the eastern seaboard and Europe, mercantile history and kind of "mild" weather for Canada with the nearby gulf stream. I have read that upon confederation in 1867, Canada enacted protectionist policies that led to the decline in manufacturing in the maritimes (which were economically connected to New England). Even today the maritimes don't seem to be drawing a lot of people. I'm not to up on history of course ...
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Old 07-12-2015, 01:30 AM
 
Location: Gatineau, QC, Canada
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I was reading a few weeks ago for a history course about how when Canada was first being colonized, it was set up so that people were almost 'forced' to make coastal cities like Halifax and St. John's more populous and important, but this inadvertently shifted around to the great lakes, partly because the land was more arable and suited for development, and also because the maritimes had too awkward of a physical geography.

Toronto was a tiny trading post originally. Nobody expected or planned it to grow so much. Quebec City, Montreal, St. John's, Halifax, I think even St. John were set up to be bigger cities and had a larger proportion of the population at first, naturally. Quebec City was bigger and more important than Montreal for quite awhile.
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