Victoria, British Columbia
Victoria // is the capital city of British Columbia, Canada, and is located on the southern tip of Vancouver Island off Canada'sPacific coast. The city has a population of about 80,017, while the metropolitan area ofGreater Victoria, has a population of 344,615, making it the 15th most populous Canadian urban region.
Victoria is about 100 kilometres (62 miles) from BC's largest city of Vancouver on the mainland. The city is about 100 kilometres (62 miles) from Seattle by airplane, ferry, or theVictoria Clipper passenger-only ferry which operates daily, year round between Seattle and Victoria and 40 kilometres (25 miles) from Port Angeles, Washington, by Coho ferry across the Strait of Juan de Fuca.
Named after Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom and, at the time, British North America, Victoria is one of the oldest cities in the Pacific Northwest, with British settlement beginning in 1843. The city has retained a large number of its historic buildings, in particular its two most famous landmarks, theBritish Columbia Parliament Buildings(finished in 1897 and home of the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia) and theEmpress hotel (opened in 1908). The city'sChinatown is the second oldest in North America after San Francisco's. The region'sCoast Salish First Nations peoples established communities in the area long before non-native settlement, possibly several thousand years earlier, which had large populations at the time of European exploration. Victoria, like many Vancouver Island communities, continues to have a sizeable First Nations presence, composed of peoples from all over Vancouver Island and beyond.
Known as the "The Garden City", Victoria is an attractive city and a popular tourism destination with a thriving technology sector that has risen to be its largest revenue-generating private industry. Victoria is in the top twenty of world cities for quality-of-life,according to Numbeo.The city has a large non-local student population, who come to attend the University of Victoria, Camosun College, Royal Roads University, the Victoria College of Art, the Sooke Schools International Programme and the Canadian College of Performing Arts. Victoria is very popular with boaters with its beautiful and rugged shorelines and beaches. Victoria is also popular with retirees, who come to enjoy the temperate and usually snow-free climate of the area as well as the usually relaxed pace of the city.
History Victoria bc Canada
Prior to the arrival of European navigators in the late 1700s, the Victoria area was home to several communities of Coast Salish peoples, including the Songhees. The Spanish and British took up the exploration of the northwest coast, beginning with the visits ofJuan Pérez in 1774 and of James Cook in 1778 although the Victoria area of the Strait of Juan de Fuca was not penetrated until 1790. Spanish sailors visited Esquimalt Harbour (just west of Victoria proper) in 1790, 1791, and 1792.
In 1841 James Douglas was charged with the duty of setting up a trading post on the southern tip of Vancouver Island, upon the recommendation by George Simpson that a new more northerly post be built in case Fort Vancouver fell into American hands (seeOregon boundary dispute). Douglas foundedFort Victoria, on the site of present-day Victoria, British Columbia in anticipation of the outcome of the Oregon Treaty in 1846, extending the British North America/United States border along the 49th parallel from theRockies to the Strait of Georgia.
Erected in 1843 as a Hudson's Bay Companytrading post on a site originally called Camosun (the native word was "camosack", meaning "rush of water") known briefly as "Fort Albert", the settlement was renamed Fort Victoria in 1846, in honour ofQueen Victoria. The Songhees established a village across the harbour from the fort. The Songhees' village was later moved north ofEsquimalt. When the crown colony was established in 1849, a town was laid out on the site and made the capital of the colony. The Chief Factor of the fort, James Douglaswas made the second governor of the Vancouver Island Colony (Richard Blanshardwas first governor, Arthur Edward Kennedywas third and last governor), and would be the leading figure in the early development of the city until his retirement in 1864.
, also known as Mungo Martin House, a Kwakwaka'wakw "big house", with totem pole
. Built by Chief Mungo Martin in 1953. Located atThunderbird Park
in Victoria, British Columbia.
When news of the discovery of gold on the British Columbia mainland reached San Francisco in 1858, Victoria became the port, supply base, and outfitting centre for miners on their way to the Fraser Canyon gold fields, mushrooming from a population of 300 to over 5000 literally within a few days. Victoria was incorporated as a city in 1862. In 1865, Esquimalt was made the North Pacific home of the Royal Navy, and remains Canada's west coast naval base. In 1866 when the island was politically united with the mainland, Victoria was designated the capital of the newunited colony instead of New Westminster – an unpopular move on the Mainland – and became the provincial capital when British Columbia joined the Canadian Confederationin 1871.
In the latter half of the 19th century, the Port of Victoria became one of North America's largest importers of opium, serving the opium trade from Hong Kong and distribution into North America. Opium trade was legal and unregulated until 1865, then the legislature issued licences and levied duties on its import and sale. The opium trade was banned in 1908.
In 1886, with the completion of the Canadian Pacific Railway terminus on Burrard Inlet, Victoria's position as the commercial centre of British Columbia was irrevocably lost to the City of Vancouver. The city subsequently began cultivating an image of genteel civility within its natural setting, aided by the impressions of visitors such as Rudyard Kipling, the opening of the popular Butchart Gardens in 1904 and the construction of theEmpress Hotel by the Canadian Pacific Railway in 1908. Robert Dunsmuir, a leading industrialist whose interests included coal mines and a railway on Vancouver Island, constructed Craigdarroch Castle in theRockland area, near the official residence of the province's lieutenant-governor. His sonJames Dunsmuir became premier and subsequently lieutenant-governor of the province and built his own grand residence atHatley Park (used for several decades asRoyal Roads Military College, now civilianRoyal Roads University) in the present City ofColwood.
A real estate and development boom ended just before World War I, leaving Victoria with a large stock of Edwardian public, commercial and residential buildings that have greatly contributed to the city's character. Victoria was the home of Sir Arthur Currie. He had been a high school teacher and real estate agent prior to the war, and before the end of the war he would command the Canadian Corps. A number of municipalities surrounding Victoria were incorporated during this period, including the Township of Esquimalt, the District of Oak Bay, and several municipalities on the Saanich Peninsula. Since World War II the Victoria area has seen relatively steady growth, becoming home to two major universities. Since the 1980s the western suburbs have been incorporated as new municipalities, such as Colwood andLangford, which are known collectively as theWestern Communities.
Greater Victoria periodically experiences calls for the amalgamation of the thirteenmunicipal governments within the Capital Regional District. The opponents of amalgamation state that separate governance affords residents a greater deal of local autonomy. The proponents of amalgamation argue that it would reduce duplication of services, while allowing for more efficient use of resources and the ability to better handle broad, regional issues and long-term planning.
Inner Harbour with Empress Hotel on left, 2014
Geography Victoria BC Canada
The landscape of Victoria was formed by water in various forms. Pleistocene glaciationput the area under a thick ice cover, the weight of which depressed the land below present sea level. These glaciers also deposited stony sandy loam till. As they retreated, their melt water left thick deposits of sand and gravel. Marine clay settled on what would later become dry land. Post-glacial rebound exposed the present-day terrain to air, raising beach and mud deposits well above sea level. The resulting soils are highly variable in texture, and abrupt textural changes are common. In general, clays are most likely to be encountered in the northern part of town and in depressions. The southern part has coarse-textured subsoils and loamy topsoils. Sandy loams and loamy sands are common in the eastern part adjoining Oak Bay. Victoria's soils are relatively unleached and less acidic than soils elsewhere on theBritish Columbia Coast. Their thick dark topsoils denoted a high level of fertility which made them valuable for farming until urbanization took over.
Victoria has a temperate climate with mild, rainy winters and cool, dry and sunny summers. The Köppen climate classificationplaces it at the northernmost limits of the cool, dry-summer subtropical zone (Csb) or cool-summer Mediterranean climate, due to its dry summers. Other climate classification systems, such as Trewartha, place it firmly in the Oceanic zone (Do).
At the Victoria Gonzales weather station, daily temperatures rise above 30 °C (86 °F) on average less than one day per year and fall below 0 °C (32.0 °F) on average only ten nights per year. Victoria has recorded completely freeze-free winter seasons four times (in 1925/26, 1939/40, 1999/2000, and 2002/03). 1999 is the only calendar year on record without a single occurrence of frost. During this time the city went 718 days without freezing, starting on 23 December 1998 and ending 10 December 2000. The second longest frost-free period was a 686-day stretch covering 1925 and 1926, marking the first and last time the city has gone the entire season without dropping below 1 °C (34 °F).
During the winter, the average daily high and low temperatures are 8 and 4 °C (46.4 and 39.2 °F), respectively. The summer months are also relatively mild, with an average high temperature of 20 °C (68 °F) and low of 11 °C (51.8 °F), although inland areas often experience warmer daytime highs. The highest temperature ever recorded in Victoria was 36.0 °C (96.8 °F) on 11 July 2007,while the coldest temperature on record was −15.7 °C (3.7 °F) on 29 December 1968. The average annual temperature varies from a high of 11.4 °C (52.5 °F) that was set in 2004 to a low of 8.6 °C (47.5 °F) set in 1916.
Due to the rain shadow effect of the nearby Olympic Mountains, Victoria is the driest location on the British Columbia coast, with much lower rainfall than other nearby areas. Total annual precipitation is just 608 mm (23.9 in) at the Gonzales weather station in Victoria compared with 1,589 mm (63 in) in Vancouver, 970 mm (38.2 in) in Seattle and 406 mm (16.0 in) in Sequim, Washington. Port Renfrew, located just 80 km (50 mi) away on the more exposed southwest coast of Vancouver Island, receives 3,671 mm (144.5 in) of precipitation annually, six times as much as Victoria. Even the Victoria Airport, 25 km (16 mi) north of the city, receives about 45% more precipitation than the city proper. Victoria's mild climate can support some palm trees, including theChinese Windmill Palm.
One feature of Victoria's climate is that it has distinct dry and rainy seasons. Nearly two-thirds of the annual precipitation falls during the four wettest months, November to February. Precipitation in December, the wettest month (109 mm or 4.3 in) is nearly eight times as high as in July, the driest month (14 mm or 0.55 in). Victoria experiences the driest summers in Canada (outside of the extreme northern reaches of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut).
Victoria averages just 26 cm (10.2 in) of snow annually, about half that of Vancouver. Roughly one third of winters see virtually no snow, with less than 5 cm (1.97 in) falling during the entire season. When snow does fall, it rarely lasts long on the ground. Victoria averages just two or three days per year with at least 5 cm (1.97 in) of snow on the ground. Every few decades Victoria receives very large snowfalls, including the record breaking 100 cm (39.4 in) of snow that fell in December 1996. That amount places Victoria 3rd for biggest snowfall among major cities in Canada.
With 2,193 hours of bright sunshine annually, Victoria is the second sunniest city in British Columbia after Cranbrook.
In July 2013, Victoria received 432.8 hours of sunshine, which is the most sunshine ever recorded in any month in British Columbia history.
Victoria's equable climate has also added to its reputation as the "City of Gardens". The city takes pride in the many flowers that bloom during the winter and early spring, including crocuses, daffodils, early-blooming rhododendrons, cherry and plum trees. Every February there is an annual "flower count" in what for the rest of the country and most of the province is still the dead of winter.
Due to its mild climate, Victoria and its surrounding area (southeastern Vancouver Island, Gulf Islands, and parts of the Lower Mainland and Sunshine Coast) are also home to many rare, native plants found nowhere else in Canada, including Quercus garryana(Garry oak), Arctostaphylos columbiana (Hairymanzanita), and Canada's only broad-leaf evergreen tree, Arbutus menziesii (Pacific madrone). Many of these species exist here, at the northern end of their range, and are found as far south as southern California and parts of Mexico.
Non-native plants grown in Victoria include the cold-hardy palm Trachycarpus fortunei, which can be found in gardens and public areas of Victoria. One of these Trachycarpus palms stands in front of City Hall.
The following is a list of neighbourhoods in the City of Victoria, as defined by the city planning department. For a list of neighbourhoods in other area municipalities, see Greater Victoria, or the individual entries for those municipalities.
Informal neighbourhoods include:
The population of Victoria was 80,017 in 2011. The Victoria Census Metropolitan Area, comprising thirteen municipalities informally referred to as Greater Victoria, has a population of 344,615 and is the largest urban area on Vancouver Island. By population, Greater Victoria is the 15th largestmetropolitan area in Canada. The Capital Regional District, which includes additional rural areas, has a total population of 345,164.
Victoria is known for its disproportionately large retiree population. Some 6.4 percent of the population of Victoria and its surrounding area are more than 80 years of age—the highest proportion for any of Canada's metropolitan areas. The city also boasts the country's third-highest concentration of people 65 and older (17.8 per cent), behind only Peterborough, Ontario, and Kelowna, British Columbia. Retirees throughout Canada are drawn to Victoria's mild climate, beautiful scenery, year-round golf season, and generally easy-going pace of life. A historically popular cliché referring to the city was that it is for "the newly wed and nearly dead".
Note: These categories are those used by Statistics Canada.
Victoria BC Canada
Victoria bc Canada
Victoria bc canada
Victoria bc canada
Victoria bc canada
Victoria bc canada
Powered by 4GoodHosting