The Calgary Region is the metropolitan area based around Calgary, Alberta. The borders of this area are defined differently for each of the Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) and the Calgary Region. The area is a major transportation hub for southern Alberta, Saskatchewan, eastern British Columbia, and parts of the northern United States. It is served by the Calgary International Airport, the third busiest airport in the country.
Unlike many major North American urbanized areas, yet similarly to other prairie centres in Canada, Calgary developed as a unicity as it incorporated most of its suburbs into the city proper. In the past, when the city limits reached the borders of neighbouring municipalities, such as Bowness, Montgomery and Midnapore, they were simply annexed into the population of Calgary. With Chestermere now a neighbour, and as Calgary's city limits continue to extend north of the airport towards Airdrie, it is highly unlikely that these populous centres will meet the same fate as did their predecessors. Still, the vast majority of the region's 1.26 million inhabitants reside within the City of Calgary proper whose civic population has itself well surpassed the 1,000,000 mark.
Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) is the definition Statistics Canada uses to determine the demographics of greater Calgary (as well as other large Canadian cities). The Calgary CMA includes the City of Calgary, Rocky View County, all urban municipalities enclosed within Rocky View County (the City of Airdrie, the Towns of Cochrane, Chestermere, Crossfield, and Irricana and the Village of Beiseker) and the Tsuu T'ina Nation. Rocky View also includes a number of unincorporated hamlets, the largest being Bragg Creek, and large country residential areas such as Bearspaw and Springbank.
According to Statistics Canada estimates dated July 1, 2009, the Calgary CMA recently surpassed the Ottawa-Gatineau CMA to become the 4th largest metropolitan area in the country with an estimated population of 1,230,248. It is also the largest CMA in Alberta and has a land area of 5,083 square kilometres (1,962.6 sq mi).
Statistics Canada also uses a greater area centered on Calgary, Census Division No. 6, for regionalized statistical purposes. It is larger than the CMA, extending further south to include the Municipal District (M.D.) of Foothills No. 31 and the municipalities that it encloses (most notably the towns of Okotoks and High River) and further north to include Mountain View County.
The Calgary Region (economic region) is essentially represented by the Calgary Regional Partnership (CRP). The CRP is a cooperative of economically associated municipalities in the area. Since the CRP is an organization and not an area per se, not all of the municipalities within the sphere of what is effectively greater Calgary are members. Unlike the CMA, the Calgary Economic Region had an estimated population of 1,263,447 in 2009. The Calgary Regional Partnership includes the Rocky View County, the City of Airdrie, the towns of Okotoks, Cochrane, Chestermere and High River, and the M.D. of Foothills No. 31. It also includes the Town of Canmore, and the M.D. of Bighorn No. 8 to the west and the Town of Strathmore to the east. The towns of Crossfield and Banff are recent additions to the CRP. Many of the communities in the CRP are also part of the Calgary Health Region. The population of the CRP is predicted to reach 1.3 million by 2012.
The CRP and its member municipalities have drafted a regional plan that outlines the Partnership's vision for a sustainable region and its concept for development over the next 60 – 70 years. They have begun sharing the draft plan with the public at a series of open houses in March and April. According to an article in the March 4, 2009 issue of the Western Wheel newspaper in Okotoks, opposition to the plan is mounting.
|M.D. of Bighorn No. 8||*||1,454||2006|
|M.D. of Foothills No. 31||*||19,736||2006|
|Rocky View County||*||*||34,171||2006|
|First Nations reserves|
|Tsuu T'ina Nation||*||*||1,373||2007|
Calgary Region is the region surrounding the city of Calgary in Alberta, Canada. Traditionally an agricultural area, it is a mix of suburban towns and semi-rural areas that are becoming bedroom communities to Calgary.
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