Canadian Geographic - - DEPARTMENTS -

May/june 2017, Cana­dian Ge­o­graphic tack­les the ur­ban en­vi­ron­ment

“Canada goes ur­ban.” That was the head­line of a Sta­tis­tics Canada re­lease last fall. The verb should have been “went.” To­day, more than 80 per cent of Cana­di­ans live in ur­ban cen­tres. The 1861 Cen­sus, con­ducted a few years be­fore Con­fed­er­a­tion, re­ported that 84 per cent of peo­ple liv­ing in what would be­come Canada resided in ru­ral ar­eas. Some­time in the 1920s, the ru­ral pop­u­la­tion fell be­low 50 per cent and city liv­ing has been on the rise ever since. So, as we con­tinue to cel­e­brate Canada’s sesqui­cen­ten­nial this year in each of our is­sues, we’ve ded­i­cated the May/june edi­tion to ex­plor­ing the ur­ban en­vi­ron­ments where most of us live. Per­haps no story il­lus­trates the con­cen­tra­tion of Cana­di­ans in ur­ban cen­tres bet­ter than the third and fi­nal in­stal­ment in our se­ries map­ping Canada’s ma­jor cities. This time we’ve mapped the conur­ba­tions of Van­cou­ver, Cal­gary, Win­nipeg, Toronto, Mon­treal and Hal­i­fax. As you might imag­ine, the maps of these ur­ban foot­prints that ex­tend well be­yond the tra­di­tional def­i­ni­tion of a city drive the point home at a glance — and there’s much more to glean, too. Other fea­ture sto­ries: a profile of the busi­ness and cul­tural ac­com­plish­ments of New Brunswick’s St. Mary’s First Na­tion (con­sid­ered by many one of the na­tion’s most suc­cess­ful ur­ban re­serves), a glimpse into the world of city wildlife, an in­ves­ti­ga­tion into the ecol­ogy and eco­nomics of Canada’s vast waste in­dus­try and our pop­u­lar an­nual ge­og­ra­phy quiz (ap­pro­pri­ately themed, of course). Com­bined, it’s a timely look at Canada gone ur­ban.

A trum­peter swan in Van­cou­ver ( top). Chief Candice Paul ( above) over­looks the Saint John River from the St. Mary’s First Na­tion in Fred­er­ic­ton, New Brunswick.

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