|Other names of Montréal:
Old names: Hochelaga
Other names: La Métropole
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Montreal, or Montréal in French is the second largest city in Canada and the largest city in the province of Quebec. It is also the third largest porn producing city in the world. At the 2001 Canadian Census, there were 1,583,590 people living on the current territory of the city of Montreal proper (new 2006 demerged territory). The population of the Montreal Census Metropolitan Area (also known as Greater Montreal Area) is estimated at 3,635,700 in 2005 , making it one of the largest French-speaking metropolitan areas in the world. Montreal is ranked as the 8th largest metropolitan area in North America and 77th in the world. In 2006, Montreal ranked as the 6th best city in the world in terms of living conditions. Montreal also ranked as the 25th richest city in the world and as the 37th most expensive city to live in on the planet, the second most expensive in Canada.Montreal is situated in the south western corner of Quebec approximately 270 kilometres (168 miles) southwest of Quebec City, the provincial capital, and 190 kilometres (118 mi) east of Ottawa, the federal capital, and 539 kilometres (335 mi) northeast of Toronto.
The city is located on the Island of Montreal at the confluence of the Saint Lawrence and Ottawa Rivers. The port of Montreal lies at one end of the St. Lawrence Seaway, which is the river gateway that stretches from the Great Lakes up into the Atlantic Ocean. Montreal is surrounded by the St. Lawrence river on its south side, and by the Rivière des Prairies on the north.
Huron, Algonquin, and Iroquois have inhabited the Montreal area for some eight thousand years. The first European to reach the area was Jacques Cartier, when, on October 2, 1535, he entered the village of Hochelega, on the Island of Montreal.
Seventy years later, Samuel de Champlain arrived on the island, but the village of Hochelaga no longer existed. In 1611, he established La Place Royale, a fur trading post on the Island of Montreal, but the local Iroquois successfully defended their land. The first permanent European settlement on the Island of Montreal was created in 1639 by a French tax collector named Jérôme Le Royer. Missionaries Paul Chomedey de Maisonneuve, Jeanne Mance and a few French colonists set up a mission named Ville Marie on May 17, 1642.Ville Marie became a centre for the fur trade and the Catholic religion, as well as a base for further exploration into New France. The Iroquois continued their attacks on the settlement until a peace treaty was signed in 1701. The town remained French until 1760, when Pierre François de Rigaud, Marquis de Vaudreuil-Cavagnal surrendered it to the British army under Jeffrey Amherst. Fire destroyed one quarter of the town on May 18, 1765.
The Treaty of Paris in 1763 ended the Seven Years' War and ceded New France to the Kingdom of Great Britain. American Revolutionists briefly held the city in 1775 but soon left. By this time, now named Montreal, the city started to grow from British immigration. The golden era of fur trading began in the city with the advent of the locally owned North West Company, the main rival to the primarily British Hudson's Bay Company.
Montreal was incorporated as a city in 1832. The city's growth was spurred by the opening of the Lachine Canal, which permitted ships to bypass the unnavigable Lachine Rapids south of the island. Montreal was the capital of the United Province of Canada from 1844 to 1849, bringing more English-speakers to the city, making the two linguistic groups roughly equal in size. The resulting increased Anglophone community built one of Canada's first universities, McGill, and the wealthy merchant classes began building large mansions at the foot of Mont Royal.
Under Canadian Independence - 1867
In 1852 Montreal had 58,000 inhabitants; by 1860 it was the largest city in British North America and the undisputed economic and cultural centre of Canada. The Canadian Pacific Railway made its headquarters there in 1880, and the Canadian National Railway in 1919. Saint Jacques Street in what is now Old Montreal, then better known as Saint James Street, became the centre of the Canadian financial industry in the late 19th century; the name "Saint James Street" was used as a metonym for Canadian high finance as much as "Wall Street" is used in the United States, or Toronto's "Bay Street" is used in Canada today. With the annexation of neighbouring towns between 1883 and 1918, Montreal became a mostly Francophone city again. The tradition to alternate between a Francophone and an Anglophone mayor thus began and lasted until 1914.
After World War I, the Prohibition movement in the United States turned Montreal into a haven for Americans looking for alcohol. Despite the increase in tourism, unemployment remained high in the city, and was exacerbated by the Stock Market Crash of 1929 and the Great Depression. However, Canada began to recover from the Great Depression in the mid-1930s, and skyscrapers such as the Sun Life Building began to appear.During World War II, Mayor Camillien Houde protested against conscription and urged Montrealers to ignore the federal government's registry of all men and women. Ottawa was furious over Houde's insubordination and put him in a prison camp until 1944, when the government was forced to institute conscription (see Conscription Crisis of 1944).
Post-WarAfter Montreal's population surpassed one million in the early 1950s, Mayor Jean Drapeau laid down plans for the future development of the city. These plans included a new metro system and an underground city, the expansion of Montreal's harbour, and the opening of the Saint Lawrence Seaway. New buildings were built on top of old ones in this time period, including Montreal's two tallest skyscrapers up to then: the 43-storey Place Ville-Marie and the 47-storey Tour de la Bourse. Two new museums were also built, and finally in 1966, the metro opened, along with several new expressways.
The city's international status was cemented by Expo '67 and the Summer Olympics in 1976. A major league baseball team, the Montreal Expos, was named after the Expo and started playing in Montreal in 1969. However, the team moved to Washington, DC in 2005, where it was re-named the Washington Nationals.
Growth of the Quebec Sovereignty MovementAfter the ascent to power of the Parti Québécois in the mid-1970s, Montreal's linguistic and ethnic composition underwent a period of transition greater than the norm for urban centres, as many anglophones relocated to Ontario. The passing of Bill 101 in 1977 would also ensure linguistic change, as new immigrants to the province learned French and became known as allophones (also see Bilingualism in Canada). The election of a separatist provincial government also had a negative effect on Montreal's economy, as a number of organizations, most prominently Sun-Life Insurance Co., relocated out of the province, moving mostly to Toronto. Toronto eclipsed Montreal around this time as Canada's largest city and chief financial hub. Throughout the 1980s and well into the 1990s, Montreal experienced a relatively slow rate of job growth as compared to other major Canadian cities. Montreal celebrated its 350th anniversary in 1992, prompting the construction of two of Montreal's tallest skyscrapers: 1000 de La Gauchetière and 1250 RenELévesque.Montreal Today
Currently, Montreal's favourable economic conditions allow further improvements in infrastructure, with the expansion of the metro system and the development of a ring road around the island. Neighbourhood gentrification is also occurring at a rapid rate. Montreal now constitutes its own region of Quebec.
In late 2005, Montreal hosted the United Nations Climate Change Conference, the first meeting joint meeting of the parties to the Kyoto Protocol and to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
Montreal lies at the confluence of several climactic regions and thus the climate in Montreal varies greatly, both by season and by day to day, and is considered a part of the culture of the city by Montrealers.Precipitation is abundant with an average snowfall of 2.14 metres (7.0 ft) per year in the winter and regular rainfall throughout the year averaging 897 millimetres (35.3 in). Each year the city government spends more than C$50 million on snow removal. Summer is the wettest season statistically, but it is also the sunniest.The coldest month of the year is January, which has a daily average temperature of −10.4 °C (13 °F) Eaveraging a daily low of −14.9 °C (5.2 °F). Due to wind chill, the perceived temperature can be much lower than the actual temperature and wind chill factor is often included in Montreal weather forecasts. The warmest month is July which has a daily average temperature of 20.9 °C (69.6 °F) Eaveraging a daily high of 26.3 °C (79.3 °F). The lowest temperature ever recorded was −37.8 °C (−36.0 °F) on 15 January 1957 and the highest temperature ever was 37.6 °C (99.7 °F) on 1 August 1975Moderate to high humidity is common in the summer. In spring and autumn, rainfall averages between 55 and 94 millimetres (2.2 and 3.7 in) a month. Some snow in spring and autumn is normal. Similarly, late heat waves as well as "Indian summers" are a regular feature of the climate.Despite its widely varying climate, the Montreal region supports a diverse array of plants and wildlife. The maple is one of the most common trees and the sugar maple in particular is an enduring symbol of Montreal and Quebec, thanks to the production of maple syrup.
The Census Metropolitan Area of Montreal (also known as Greater Montreal Area) has a population of 3,635,700 in 2005 according to Statistics Canada. This total includes the neighbouring cities of Laval and Longueuil, as well as other smaller cities. Montreal proper, in its new city borders following the January 1, 2006 demerger, has a population of 1,583,590 (according to 2001 census figures). A resident of Montreal is known as a Montrealer in English and a Montréalais(e) in French. Residents sometimes refer to the city by the shorthand of MTL, or occasionally by the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Airport designation of YUL. The large population of Montreal justifies it having its own postal district, H span, together with Laval.About 67.8% of the population of Montreal area is composed of francophones, 18.4% have neither French nor English as their first language and are called allophones, and 13.8% are anglophones. On the island of Montreal itself, these numbers change and francophones constitute only 53% of the population, allophones 29%, and anglophones 18%. However, the majority of residents have at least a working knowledge of both languages, and a majority of allophones speak either English or French as a second language. This trend has increased after the French language legislation of the 1970s. Armenian, Italian, Romanian, Arabic, Greek, Portuguese, Spanish and Hindi are also very popular languages.
The Caucasian population is vastly descended from people of French, Irish, Scottish and Italian origin. According to Statistics Canada 2001, the top four ethnic groups in the city are Canadian at 55.7% (1,885,085), French at 26.6% (900,485), Italian at 6.6% (224,460), and Irish at 4.7% (161,235). Statistics Canada concludes that those who identified themselves as Canadian are most likely of British, French or Irish origin whose families have been in Canada for many generations.
Montreal is a multi-ethnic city. Caucasians are the majority in the city but there are substantial groups of minorities.
White: 2,886,400 or 86.8%
Black: 129,705 or 3.9%
Arab: 67,830 or 2.0%
South Asian: 56,655 or 1.7%
Chinese: 50,115 or 1.5%
mixed race: 46,900 or 1.4%,
Once the largest city in Canada, Montreal remains a vibrant major centre of commerce, industry, culture, finance, and world affairs. Montreal is a major port city along the Saint Lawrence Seaway, a deep-draft inland waterway which links it to the industrial centres of the Great Lakes. It's the largest inland port in the world and is one of the most important. As one of the most important ports in Canada, it is a trans-shipment point for grain, sugar, petroleum products, machinery, and consumer goods. For this reason, it is part of the railway backbone of Canada and has always been an extremely important rail city; it is the eastern terminus of the Canadian Pacific Railway and home to the headquarters of the Canadian National Railway.Montreal industries include pharmaceuticals, high technology, finance, textile and clothing manufacturing (the schmata industry), higher education, electronic goods, software engineering, building and city engineering, transportation devices, printed goods, fabric, aerospace and tobacco.
The headquarters of the Canadian Space Agency are located in Longueuil, southeast of Montreal. Montreal also hosts the headquarters of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO, a United Nations body); the World Anti-Doping Agency (an Olympic body); and the International Air Transport Association (IATA); as well as some 60 other international organizations in various fields.
Montreal is also a vibrant centre of Canadian film and television production. The operational headquarters and five studios of the Academy Award-winning documentary producer the National Film Board of Canada can be found here, as well as the head offices of Telefilm Canada, the national feature-length film and television funding agency. Given its eclectic architecture and broad availability of film services and crew members, Montreal is a popular filming location for feature-length films, and sometimes stands in for European locations. The city is also home to several distinct film festivals which contribute significantly to its economy.