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About Ottawa, Ontario
Metropolitan Ottawa has a population of about 1.5 million people and is the capital of Canada. The city is located in southeastern Ontario province on the Ottawa River.
The Ottawa Valley was originally settled by Europeans in the late 1700s and early 1800s. Much of the earliest settlers were involved in the fur trade with Ottawa serving as a transit point and base of operations for the Hudson Bay Company.
Later, timber and forestry became the dominant industry as lumber was shipped from the Ottawa Valley to Montreal and Quebec City and further on to Europe.
The city of Ottawa became the capital of Canada in 1857 and has served as the seat of government for the country ever since.
The Ottawa economy is concentrated in public administration and high technology industries. As the capital of the country, it is home to many government facilities and the federal government is the region's largest employer.
Ottawa is located along the south bank of the Ottawa River which serves as the border between Ontario and Quebec provinces. The city is surrounded by a 'greenbelt' of recreational and park land, including Mer Blue Conservation Area and Parc Gatineau (across the river in Quebec).
Ottawa has a cold, snowy winters and warm, but short summers. Winter daily highs are in the mid 20s°F. Summer are warm with daily highs in the high 70s°F. An average of 93 inches (317 cm) of snow falls each year.
Ottawa is a very bilingual city - in part because it is a border town between French-speaking Quebec and English-speaking Ontario and in part because it is the seat of the federal government. Foreign-born residents make up about 22% of the population.
Ottawa is served by Ottawa International Airport (IATA code: YOW).
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