Mississauga, incorporated in 1974, is a city located in the Regional Municipality of Peel, Ontario, and part of the Greater Toronto Area. With a population of 668,549 as of the 2006 census, it is Canada's sixth-most populous municipality, and has almost doubled in population in each of the last two decades. It had the largest population growth in Canada (89,500) between the census years of 1986-1991. Another 80,994 were added between 1991-1996; an increase of 17.5%. From the 1996-2001 censuses, Mississauga gained a further 68,543 residents; an increase of 12.6%. From 2001 to 2006 the population continued to increase 9.1%. As a suburb, Mississauga's growth is attributed to its proximity to Toronto.
Mississauga has been trying to create a distinctive image for itself over the past few years. An international architectural design competition was held in 2006 for a 56-story condominium tower that is intended to be a landmark for the city named Absolute World. The city is debt-free and has not borrowed money since 1978. With five major highways passing through the city, Mississauga offers access to major destinations in Canada and the United States. In addition, most of Toronto Pearson International Airport, Canada's busiest, is located in the city. Residents of the city are called Mississaugans. Mississauga also boasts one of the largest corporate/financial districts in Canada with major international companies having their Canadian headquarters located in the region including Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft, Pepsico, General Electric, Heidelberger Druckmaschinen, Fujitsu and Wal Mart, among many other Fortune 500 companies.
At the time of the arrival of the Europeans in the 1600s, both Iroquoian and Algonquian speaking peoples already lived in the Credit River Valley area. One of the First Nations groups the traders found around the Credit River area was called the Mississaugas, a tribe originally from the Georgian Bay area. By 1700 the Mississaugas had driven away the Iroquois.
Toronto Township was formed on August 2, 1805 when officials from York (what is now Toronto) purchased 84,000 acres (340 km²) of land from the Mississaugas for 1,000 pounds and in 1806 the area was opened for settlement. Toronto township is not to be confused with the present-day City of Toronto, as no part of the former township boundaries overlap with the Toronto of today. The various communities settled include: Lakeview, Clarkson, Cooksville, Dixie, Erindale (called Springfield until 1890), Lorne Park, Port Credit, Sheridan, Streetsville, Meadowvale and Summerville. This region would become known as Toronto Township. Part of northeast Mississauga, including the Airport lands and Malton were part of Gore Township.
After the land was surveyed, much of it was given by the Crown in the form of land grants to United Empire Loyalists who emigrated from the thirteen colonies during and after the American Revolution, some first went to New Brunswick before arriving in Mississauga. More than a dozen small communities grew in this area, most of which were located near natural resources, waterways for industry and fishing, and routes leading into York.
In 1820, a second purchase was made and additional settlements established including: Barbertown, Britannia, Burnhamthorpe, Derry West, Elmbank, Malton, Meadowvale Village, Mount Charles, and Streetsville. This led to the eventual displacement of the Mississaugas and, in 1847, they were relocated to a reserve in the Grand River Valley near present-day Hagersville. In 1873, in light of the continued growth seen in this area much as a result of the many railway lines passing through the township which spurred on industry, the Toronto Township Council was formed to oversee the affairs of the various villages that were unincorporated at that time. The Council's responsibilities included road maintenance, the establishment of a police force, and mail delivery service. Except for small villages, some grist mills and brickworks served by rail lines, most of present-day Mississauga was agricultural land, including fruit growing orchards through much of the 19th and first half of the 20th century. Toronto residents would travel to the township to pick fruits and garden vegetables.
Mississauga Civic Centre seen from the south-east. Influenced by farmsteads which once occupied much of Mississauga, the architecture is based on a "futuristic farm" (the clock tower is the windmill, the main building on the top-right corner is the farmhouse, the cylindrical council chamber is the silo, and the pentagonal building on the bottom left is the barn)
Cottages were constructed along Lake Ontario in the 1920s as weekend getaway houses for weary city dwellers.
Malton Airport opened in 1937, which would become Canada's busiest, Toronto Pearson International Airport.
The Queen Elizabeth Way highway, one of the first controlled access highways in the world opened from Highway 27 to Highway 10 , Port Credit, in 1935 and later Hamilton and Niagara in 1939. The first prototypical suburban developments occurred around the same time, in the area of the Dixie Road and the QEW. Development in general moved north and west from there over time and around established towns. Large scale developments such as in Meadowvale and Erin Mills sprung up in the 1960s and 70s.
With the exception of Port Credit and Streetsville, the township settlements of Lakeview, Cooksville, Lorne Park, Clarkson, Erindale, Sheridan, Dixie, Meadowvale Village, and Malton were amalgamated by a somewhat unpopular provincial decree in 1968 to form the Town of Mississauga. The town name was chosen by plebiscite over "Sheridan". Political will, as well as a belief that a larger city would be a hegemony in Peel County, kept Port Credit and Streetsville as independent island towns encircled by the Town of Mississauga. In 1974, both were annexed by Mississauga when it reincorporated as a city. That year, the sprawling Square One Shopping Centre opened, which has since expanded many times its original size.
On November 10, 1979, a 106-car freight train derailed while carrying explosive and poisonous chemicals just north of the intersection of Mavis Road and Dundas in Mississauga. The resulting fire was allowed to burn itself out, but a ruptured chlorine tank was the main cause for concern. With the possibility of a deadly cloud of chlorine gas spreading through suburban Mississauga, 218,000 people were evacuated. Within a few days Mississauga was practically a ghost town. Later when the mess had been cleared and the danger neutralized residents were allowed to return to their homes. At the time, it was the largest peacetime evacuation in North American history. Due to the speed and efficiency in which it was conducted, many cities later studied and modelled their own emergency plans after Mississauga's. For many years afterwards, the name "Mississauga" was to Canadians associated with a major rail disaster.
North American telephone customers placing calls to Mississauga (and other post 1970 Ontario cities) may not recognize the charge details on their billings, as Bell Canada continues to use the former community names, rather than "Mississauga", to identify exchanges in the city: Clarkson, Cooksville, Malton, Port Credit, Streetsville.
Mississauga has had only three mayors in its history. Dr. Martin Dobkin was the city's first mayor in 1974. He was then followed by Ron A. Searle. Searle was defeated by then-city councillor and former mayor of Streetsville, Hazel McCallion. McCallion is regarded as a force in provincial politics and often referred to as Hurricane Hazel, comparing her political force to the devastating 1954 storm that struck the Toronto area. McCallion has won or been acclaimed in every mayoral election since 1978, and in recent years has not even campaigned. She was recently re-elected for her eleventh term in November 2006 winning 91% of the votes. McCallion is the nation's longest serving mayor and was runner-up in World Mayor 2005.
In 2006, an international architectural design competition was held for a 50 storey condominium tower that is intended to be a recognizable landmark for the city. The winning design, named Absolute World, by Chinese architect Yansong Ma of the MAD firm, is a bold, curvaceous tower that was dubbed the "Marilyn Monroe" for its supposed sexiness, and has received plaudits from urban architecture critics such as Christopher Hume of the Toronto Star. The building is currently scheduled to be finished by 2010. Mississauga expierienced a condominium boom from 2004 to late 2007. Almost 90 percent of the high rises here were built during that period. After this boom, Mississauga will have one of Canada's largest skylines.
Sports and Recreation
Mississauga has been the home of the Mississauga St. Michael's Majors of the Ontario Hockey League since 2007, when the team moved from Toronto. It was previously home to the Mississauga Icedogs from 1999-2007, before they moved to St. Catharines and became the Niagara IceDogs. The Hershey Centre, the city's main sports venue, was opened in 1999 for the arrival of the Icedogs, and is where the St. Michael's Majors currently play. Other hockey teams include the Mississauga Chiefs of the Canadian Women's Hockey League (who play at Iceland Mississauga), the Mississauga Chargers (who play at Port Credit Arena) and Streetsville Derbys (who play at Westwood Arena) of the Ontario Provincial Junior A Hockey League, and the many teams in the Greater Toronto Hockey League, Mississauga Hockey League, and Mississauga Girls Hockey League that play in the city's 13 arenas. In addition, there is a roller hockey team, the Mississauga Rattlers of the Great Lakes Inline Junior "A" Roller Hockey League.
The city also has teams for box lacrosse (Mississauga Tomahawks of the OLA Junior A Lacrosse League), cricket (Mississauga Ramblers of the Toronto and District Cricket League, Mississauga Titans of the Etobicoke District Cricket League), Canadian football (Mississauga Warriors of the Ontario Varsity Football League), and Australian football (Mississauga Demons of the Ontario Australian Football League). Mississauga's rugby players are now served by the Mississauga Blues at the youth level though many still play for the more established clubs in neighbouring cities.
Recreational clubs include the Mississauga Figure Skating Club, Mississauga Synchronized Swimming Association, North Mississauga Soccer Club,North Mississauga Club, Mississauga Falcons Soccer Club Mississauga Canoe Club, Don Rowing Club at Port Credit, and the Mississauga Aquatic Club. There are over 481 parks and woodlands areas in Mississauga.
Mississauga is a quickly growing and multicultural city. Statistics Canada estimates that Mississauga now has 704,000 people, an increase of 150,000 from the previous decade and the population has roughly doubled in past twenty years. The city has one of the largest cluster of ethnic groups in Ontario and Canada. According to the 2006 census, the racial makeup of the city is as follows:
|Multiple Visible Minority||9,100||1.4|
|Other Visible Minority||5,715||0.9|
Slightly less than 45% of the population speaks a language other than English, reflecting a large immigrant population. 46.61% of the population was not born in Canada. 40.20% of the population are members of a visible minority (non-white). 21.29% of the population is under 14 years of age, compared to those of retirement age; 8.51%. The median (middle) age in Mississauga is 35.0.
Despite the plethora of cultures, Mississauga retains a Christian majority. The 2001 census indicates that 69.78% of the population adhere to Christianity, Catholics constituting 42.00%, while the remaining 27.78% adhere to various Protestant, and Orthodox Christian groups. The 2001 census indicates that there are Muslim: 6.83%, Hindu: 4.73%, Sikh: 3.82%, Buddhism, Judaism and others. Those non-professing a faith number 11.92%.
Mississauga is the home to the University of Toronto at Mississauga (UTM/Erindale College), one of three intercity campuses of the University of Toronto. UTM has an enrollment of approximately 10,000 students. It is growing rapidly, at a rate of about 1,000 students per year since 2002.
Mississauga is served by the Peel District School Board and the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board. Together there are more than 150 schools in this city to fulfill the needs of its large youth population.
Mississauga also has many prominent programs which push students to show their full potential including:
The city's two main hospitals are Credit Valley Hospital and Trillium Health Centre (formerly Mississauga Hospital). The health system and the administration for students in Mississauga was the property of the Peel District School Board Health Centre and the health support for citizens in Mississauga was the property of Peel Health Centre. The eastern part of Mississauga was the property of Pearson Health (Greater Toronto Area Health Department).
Mississauga has the highest concentration of highways of any city in Canada. Highway 401 (the Macdonald-Cartier Freeway, connecting Windsor to Quebec) passes through the city's north end. The eastern part uses the collector/express lane system and feeds into Highway 403, the main highway in the city, which runs through the City Centre and Erin Mills areas. The Queen Elizabeth Way (QEW), the city's first highway, runs through the southern half of the city. These three highways each run east-west, with the exception of the 403 from the 401 to Cawthra Road, and the 407 to QEW. North of 401, the collector lanes of the 403 become Highway 410, which goes to Brampton. Part of Highway 409 is within the city of Mississauga, and it provides access to Pearson Airport. Two other highways are usually considered part of the network even though they are not within the city itself. Highway 407, though never entering Mississauga, runs just metres from the north and northwestern city limits. Highway 427 forms the Toronto-Mississauga boundary in the northeast, and is always within 2 kilometres of the boundary further south, with the exception of the area around Centennial Park.
Mississauga is on three major railway lines (two owned by Canadian National Railway and one owned by Canadian Pacific Railway), which lead into and around Toronto. The GO Transit commuter rail service provides service into Toronto's Union Station along the Lakeshore West, Georgetown, and Milton lines. VIA Rail service in the Quebec City-Windsor Corridor is provided on both CN lines, although there are no stops in Mississauga.
The city's public transit service, Mississauga Transit, provides bus service across the city, and connects to the Toronto Transit Commission's subway, GO Transit (which provides an extensive intercity bus service),
Mississauga is a unique Canadian city divided into many neighbourhoods. It is a wonderful area to raise a family on the doorstep of the busy and bustling Toronto. Mississauga has grown over the years to blend smaller communities that have been around for 100's of years into a larger centre. There is a difference of housing and properties from large heritage and older homes to communities of condos and townhouses. Here are the neighbourhoods and feel free to click on the names to see the properties in these areas.
Typical Listings on the market now
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