Halifax, Nova Scotia
|Municipal Statute||Regional Municipality |
|Population||390,096 hab. (2011)|
|Urban area population||413,700 inches.|
|Coordinates||44° 38′ 52′ north, 63° 34′ 17′ west|
|Area||549,028 ha = 5,490.28 km2|
|Language(s)||English, French-speaking and French-speaking minority|
Geolocation on the map: Canada
Geolocation on the map: Nova Scotia
Geolocation on the map: Nova Scotia
The Regional Municipality of Halifax (Halifax Regional Municipality), commonly known as Halifax (Mi'kmaq: K'jipuktuk, Scottish Gaelic: Halafaics) is the capital of the Canadian province of Nova Scotia. It is also the seat of the provincial Crown of Nova Scotia and the largest municipality in the Atlantic provinces.
The city is a large economic center with many government services and private sector businesses. The major employers are the Department of National Defense, various departments of the Canadian federal government and the port of Halifax.
The city's population is 390,000 in 2011. It is one of the largest fishing ports in the world and the largest Canadian military naval base. Halifax is the most populated city on Canada's Atlantic coast. It is the second largest coastal city in the country, after Vancouver, British Columbia. The city comprises approximately 40% of the population of Nova Scotia and 15% of the population of the Atlantic provinces.
Halifax is one of Canada's oldest cities, founded on , with Edward Cornwallis arriving at the port of Chebucto, before 2,567 settlers. The city was then a British outpost. It is the headquarters of the North America and West Indies Station of the Royal Navy.
In 1917, Halifax was the site of the largest explosion created by man before the atomic bombing of Hiroshima in 1945: the explosion of Mont Blanc, a French ammunition ship.
Hurricane Juan hit Halifax on . It is the largest hurricane in Halifax since 1893. The storm is causing a lot of trouble for the city because it is one of the most powerful and destructive storms ever seen in Canada.
Halifax was called Chebucto (the largest port) (also Chibouctou in French) originally by the Mi'kmaq Amerindians who lived there. Being part of Acadia but several times contested between New France and New England, there were numerous battles in the area. In 1746 Louisbourg was captured by the English, the missionary priest Jean-Louis Le Loutre had become the link between the Acadian settlers and French expeditions by sea or land. The authorities had given instructions to receive the French fleet in Chibouctou Bay. The otter was the only person able to know the signals that could identify the French wing of the Duke of Anville's expedition, which reached Chibouctou with great difficulty before being decimated by the typhus and the scorbut: eight thousand men perish in this disaster known as the "Chibouctou campaign." After a few years, the city of Halifax was founded by General Edward Cornwallis on as a military outpost for the British to attract settlers and compete with the French port of Louisbourg, Cape Breton Island. The seat of the government of Nova Scotia was transferred from Annapolis Royal to Halifax on . The outpost was appointed in honor of George Montagu-Dunk, 2th Earl of Halifax, who was the chairman of the British office of commerce. In 1758, promoted to Rear Admiral of the Blue Wing, Philip Durell remained in America for the winter as Commander-in-Chief. Its mission was to choose a suitable location in Halifax to house and repair Royal Navy ships.
Halifax was ideal for a military base, being located at one of the largest natural ports in the world, and capable of being well protected by batteries located on McNabs Island, on the North West Arm, on the Cape of the current Point Pleasant Park, and on the site that became the Redoubt-York. There is also a large hill overlooking the port, on which a citadel was built. Halifax is becoming one of the largest ports in the world.
The Halifax Town Hall was built between 1890.
After the Titanic sinking in 1912, the research effort was coordinated in Halifax: 121 of the 328 bodies recovered were buried at Fairview Cemetery, 19 other victims were buried at Mount Olivet Cemetery (en) and 10 at Baron de Hirsch Cemetery (en).
During the First and Second World War (HX convoys), the ship convoys met in the Bedford Basin in Halifax Harbor before heading to the Atlantic Ocean. On , a particularly hazy morning, the largest human-made explosion before nuclear weapons, the Halifax explosion, occurred in the port: a Norwegian boat, the Imo, hits a French boat loaded with ammunition, the Mont Blanc, which explodes and causes more than 2,000 deaths and 3,000 injured (other sources report 9,000 injured), 3,000 buildings destroyed, 25,000 homeless. The explosion is heard over 400 kilometers away.
During the 1960s, the black community neighborhood of Africville, north of Halifax, was demolished and its residents were displaced in order to free up new spaces for industrial use and for the development of Bridge A. Murray Mackay.
In the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, growth in the suburbs of Halifax was much lower than in many comparable Canadian cities. This was partly because of a weaker economy and a smaller population base than, for example, in central Canada, but also because of a deliberate policy of local government to limit suburban growth. In the 1990s, private developers received more construction permits, as they had long wanted. Today, Halifax is more dense than most Canadian cities, although large pavilion expanses have developed in Dartmouth and Sackville. In the late 1990s, the industrial and commercial park of Bayers Lake was developed, where warehouse-style stores are located. This park has become an important shopping center for the city and the province.
In the 1990s, like many other Canadian cities, Halifax merged with its suburbs into a single municipal government, the Halifax Regional Municipality, rather than several separate municipal governments. Although cities in other provinces affected by the cluster have maintained their original names, Halifax is often referred to as HRM (Halifax Regional Municipality), particularly in the media.
The city hosted the G7 summit in 1995.
After decades of discussion, an agreement was reached in 2003 to build several wastewater treatment facilities around the port. Sewage was first treated in 2006. In , the sewage treatment plant was damaged by torrential rains and was shut down until .
On , Halifax was hit by Hurricane Juan, the largest hurricane in the city since 1893. The storm caused serious problems for the city for a week. The entire city was deprived of electricity for a brief period and it took two weeks to restore electricity in all sectors. During the hurricane several people were killed: a mother and two children were killed in a candle-caused house fire, a paramedical worker was killed in downtown Halifax when a tree crashed on his ambulance, and a man from Hants County was killed by the fall of a tree. Five months later, the city was buried under 95 cm of snow by a winter storm dubbed the white Juan.
Halifax hosted the XXIXth finals of the 2008 Acadian Games.
The clock tower
Perhaps the most recognizable symbol of the city is the clock that dominates the city center of the Citadel hill. Prince Edward, Duke of Kent, had it built in 1800 when he was Commander of the British Armed Forces in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. Being very accurate himself, he demanded that the inhabitants of the city be as well, which is why the clock was located to be visible from everywhere in the old city.
Halifax is located on the south coast of Nova Scotia, south of the 45th parallel, at a latitude comparable to the city of Bordeaux, France.
The city is built on a series of plateaus and hills around the port of Halifax; the city center is located on a central peninsula. The suburbs include many fishing villages.
The Halifax City Council is composed of the Mayor and 16 municipal councilors. Now the mayor is Mike Savage.
The town hall is located at 1841 Argyle Street. It was built between 1887 and 1890.
The city of Halifax is included in two federal electoral districts:
- Halifax: the current member for that riding is Andy Fillmore.
- Halifax West: the current member for that riding is Geoff Regan.
Population and society
According to Statistics Canada's 2016 population census, the Halifax Regional Municipality has a population of 403,131 living in 173,324 of its 187,338 private dwellings, a 3.3% change from its population of 390,086 in 2011. With an area of 5,490.35 km2, the city has a population density of 73.4 /km2 in 2016. In 2016, 15% of the population was 14 years of age or younger, while 16% were 65 years of age or older.
The city of Halifax is overwhelmingly English-speaking (89.6%). In the city had 40,000 French-speaking inhabitants, 10,000 of whom were native speakers (2.6%) and 345 of whom were the only language. On that date, the municipality decided to publish all its municipal notices in French. The third mother tongue of the inhabitants is Arabic (1.6%).
Mother tongues of the people of Halifax (2016)
|Rang||Language||Number of speakers||Percentage|
85% of the city's population is Christian, while 13% of the population declares themselves without religious affiliation. 1% is Muslim, Jewish, Buddhist, Hindu or Sikh. Catholics are primarily the Archdiocese of Halifax-Yarmouth, while Anglicans (Protestants) of the Anglican Diocese of Nova Scotia & PEI. Among the city's notable religious buildings is the Cathedral of All Saints of Halifax.
The Halifax Chamber of Commerce has 16,000 members and its primary objective is to promote local economic interests.
The Halifax area is served by the Halifax Stanfield International Airport and the Port of Halifax.
Halifax enjoys a continental climate on the eastern facades that is both cold and humid (Dfb type according to the Koppen classification). Winters are generally less severe than in most Canadian cities, and conditions are often wet in winter, while most of Canada is very cold and snowy. However, Halifax is normally snowed from December to March. It falls on average 261 cm of snow per year. Spring and autumn are mild, with lots of fog. Autumn is often very pleasant. Hurricanes are rare, but known. However, severe storms are frequent, and rain is more frequent, mainly because of the city's location on the Atlantic coast.
|Average minimum temperature (°C)||-10.3||-10.6||-6.1||-0.9||4.1||9.3||13.2||13.2||9||4||-0.6||-7.2||1.4|
|Average Temperature (°C)||-5.8||-6||-1.7||3.6||9.4||14.7||18.3||18.1||13.8||8.5||3.2||-3||6.1|
|Average Maximum Temperature (°C)||-1.5||-1.5||2.6||8||14.7||20.1||23.4||23||18.7||13||7||1.2||10.7|
There are six universities in Halifax: Dalhousie University, Saint Mary's University, King's College, Mount Saint Vincent University, Nova Scotia College of Art and Design and the Halifax campus of Sainte-Anne University.
Hockey: the Halifax Mooseheads play in the LHJMQ (Quebec Major Junior Hockey League), in the Maritimes Division, along with the Charlottetown Islanders, the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles, the St. John Sea Dogs, the Acadie-Bathurst Titan and the Moncton Wildcats.
Basketball: The Halifax Rainmen is a member of the National Basketball League of Canada in the Atlantic Division, along with the Island Storm of Prince Edward Island, the Moncton Miracles, the Jazz of Montreal and the Mill Rats of Saint John.
Box Lacrosse: the Halifax Thunderbirds played in the NLL (National Lacrosse League), North Division, along with the Rock of Toronto, the Buffalo Bandits and the Rochester Knighthawks.
Halifax is paired with Hakodate (Japan) and Norfolk (Virginia).
- William Annand (1808-1887), former Premier of Nova Scotia;
- Sharon Carstairs (1942-), politician;
- Philip Carteret Hill (1821-1894), former Premier of Nova Scotia;
- Michael Hannan (1821-1882), Archbishop of Halifax;
- Cornelius O'Brien (1843-1906), Archbishop of Halifax;
- Sidney Crosby (1987-), professional hockey player;
- Darrell Dexter (1957-), former Premier of Nova Scotia;
- John Valentine Ellis (1835-1913), journalist and politician;
- Hal Foster (1892-1982), cartoonist of Prince Vaillant and Tarzan;
- Leslie Hope (1965-), actress;
- Alexander Keith (1795-1873), businessman;
- Nathan MacKinnon (1995-), professional hockey player;
- Brad Marchand (1988-), professional hockey player;
- Sarah McLachlan (1968-), singer and musician;
- Peter North (1957-), pornographic actor;
- Craig Olejnik (1979-), actor;
- Ellen Page (1987-), actress;
- John Sparrow David Thompson (1845-1894), former Prime Minister of Canada;
- Denny Doherty (1940-2007), singer of The Mamas & The Papas;
- Henri-Dominique Paratte (1950-), writer, literary critic, professor emeritus and cultural agent.
- Harry Wickwire Foster (1902-1964), Canadian Army General
- Edward Joseph McCarthy (1850-1931), Archbishop of the Catholic Church
Notes and References
- Statistics Canada. 2011 Census, Halifax, Regional Municipality.
- "Edward Cornwallis, section: Foundation of Halifax" in The Canadian Encyclopedia, Historica Canada, 1985-. (accessed ).
- Duhamel du Monceau, Bruno de Dinechin, p. 145.
- Le Petit Robert des nom, (ISBN 9782849027400 ), p. 1003..
- (en) "Titanic Main Page", halifax.ca (accessed January 25, 2014).
- (en) Titanic whitestarships, at titanic-whitestarships.com, accessed 25 January 2014.
- "Halifax Wastewater Treatment Facility Project Update" (accessed September 23, 2012).
- "Districts & Councillors", on halifax.ca (accessed August 3, 2020).
- "Mayor Mike Savage", on halifax.ca (accessed August 3, 2020).
- "Population and Housing Figures - Table Highlights, 2016 Census (Nova Scotia)", Statistics Canada, February 8, 2017, accessed January 13, 2018.
- "Statistics Canada - 2006 Community Profiles - Halifax" (accessed February 23, 2020)
- "Statistics Canada - 2016 Community Profiles - Halifax" (accessed February 23, 2020)
- "Municipal notices and messages to French citizens in Halifax", Radio-Canada, published and consulted on January 13, 2018.
- "The City of Halifax will soon publish all of its notices in French", Radio-Canada, published and consulted on January 13, 2018.
- "Diocese of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island", on Diocese of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island (accessed August 3, 2020).
- (en) "About the Chamber", on halifaxchamber.com, Halifax Chamber of Commerce (accessed May 15, 2019)
- (en) Sherri Borden Colley, "Halifax Chamber of Commerce appoints first African-Nova Scotian chair in 268 years", on cbc.ca, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, (accessed May 15, 2019)