Located in southwestern Ontario just north of the shores of Lake Erie, London is one of Canada’s fastest growing cities with a dynamic population and culture that accommodates lifestyles of all kinds.
Whether you’re thinking of moving here for professional or personal reasons, the city not only offers modern conveniences and amenities of its own but is located just a few hundred kilometers from North America’s 3rd largest city.
The City of London was first incorporated as a town in 1826 and became a city in 1855. The city is home to over 366,000 people, making it the 11th most populous municipality in Canada. London is situated on the north bank of the Thames River and is surrounded by the agricultural countryside that is typical of southwestern Ontario. The city has a rich history and was an important transportation and industrial center in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Today, London is a diversified city with a strong economy that is anchored by education, healthcare, insurance, and technology sectors. Major employers in the city include Western University, University Hospital London (UHL), St. Joseph’s Health Care, London Life Insurance, and Info-Tech Research Group. The city also has a vibrant arts and culture scene that is home to many festivals and events throughout the year.
The London economy is diversified with a strong base in education, healthcare, insurance, and technology sectors. Major employers in the city include Western University, University Hospital London (UHL), St. Joseph’s Health Care, London Life Insurance, and Info-Tech Research Group.
The city is also home to a number of manufacturing companies, including Ford Motor Company of Canada, Linamar Corporation, and Siemens Wind Power. In recent years, the city has seen a strong growth in the technology sector, with many new startups and tech companies locating in the city.
The London area is also home to a large number of call centers, including Concentrix, HSBC, ADP, and Telus.
London has a rich culture that is reflected in its many festivals and events throughout the year. Some of the more popular festivals include the London Film Festival, Home County Folk Music and Art Festival, Ribfest, and Sunfest.
The city also has a vibrant arts scene with many art galleries and museums located in the downtown core. The Museum of London is one of the city’s most popular attractions and tells the story of London from its earliest inhabitants to the present day.
The city’s theater scene is also active, with a number of theaters located in the downtown core. The Grand Theater is the oldest and most prominent theater in the city and offers a wide range of performances throughout the year.
Situated just across the Thames River and a bit north of downtown is one of the town’s most prominent institutions, The University of Western Ontario. One of Canada’s largest universities, Western has a significant impact on the city both economically and socially.
London is referred to by many locals as a “University Town.”
London has a wealth of recreational opportunities for residents of all ages. The city has over 180 parks and gardens, including Victoria Park which is the largest park in London. The park offers a wide range of recreational facilities, including an outdoor pool, sports fields, playgrounds, and a splash pad.
The city also has a number of golf courses, including Highland Golf Club, Sunningdale Golf and Country Club, and Thames Valley Golf Club.
London is also home to a number of sports teams, including the London Knights (hockey), London Lightning (basketball), and London Beefeaters (football).
Nightlife and events of all sorts abound in Western, though much of it caters to the younger student population. Although it doesn’t boast the same world-class appeal as nearby Toronto, there’s no shortage of venues for entertainment and socializing.
The real estate market in London is active and offers a wide variety of housing options, including high rises, condos, townhomes, although the majority of the town’s homes are full-detached single family homes.
The average price for a home in London may not be far behind Toronto and the rest of the GTA, though prices vary considerably depending on the neighbourhood.
The more historic city centre is packed with condos, townhomes, student housing, and traditional residential homes. Surrounded on all sides by newer suburban style housing developments, London closely follows the conventional Canadian city layout with older buildings closer to the downtown core and newer subdivisions extending out as the city grows.
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London has a well-developed transportation system that includes a network of roads, highways, and public transit. The city is served by two major highways, Highway 401 and the 402, which provide access to Toronto and Windsor respectively.
The city is also served by a comprehensive public transit system that includes buses, streetcars, and a subway system. The London Transit Commission (LTC) operates the bus and streetcar systems, while the Metrolinx operates the subway system.
The LTC is in the process of upgrading its bus fleet with new buses that are accessible to people who use wheelchairs. The city also has a number of bike lanes and trails that provide residents with a convenient way to get around the city.
In conclusion, London is a vibrant and diverse city with something to offer residents of all ages. The city has a strong economy, active arts and culture scene, and a wealth of recreational opportunities. The real estate market is active and offers a variety of housing options, and the city’s transportation system is well-developed and convenient. If you’re looking for a city that has it all, London is the place for you!
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* Featured Image adapted courtesy of CC 2.0 creative commons.