Brampton is the third-largest city in the Greater Toronto Area of Ontario, Canada and the seat of Peel Region. As of the 2006 census, Brampton's population stood at 433,806, making it the 11th largest city in Canada. It is also one of Canada's fastest growing municipalities with an average annual growth rate (2001 - 2006) of 6.6%. With a median age at 33.7 it is also the youngest community in the GTA. Brampton celebrated its sesquicentennial anniversary in 2003, marking 150 years since its incorporation as a village in 1853, taking its name from the rural town of Brampton, Cumbria, England. Visible minorities combined now form the majority of the population.
Brampton was once known as The Flowertown of Canada, a title it earned due to the city's large greenhouse industry, which included Dale's Flowers, a company that won many international rose awards for nearly half a century. Today, its major economic sectors include Advanced Manufacturing, Retail Administration and Logistics, ICT, Food and Beverage, Life Sciences and Business Services. National headquarters of companies such as Loblaw Companies, HBC/Zellers, Bacardi, Brita and Clorox are located within the city.
The city is home to Canadian Forces Army Reserve unit The Lorne Scots (Peel, Dufferin and Halton Regiment).
Prior to 1700s, the only building of consequence at the corner of Main and Queen streets, the recognized centre of Brampton, was William Buffy's tavern. In fact, at the time, the area was referred to as "Buffy's Corners". All real business in Chinguacousy Township took place 1 mile distant at Martin Salisbury's tavern. By 1834, John Elliott laid out the area in lots for sale, and applied the name "Brampton" to the area, which was soon adopted by others.
In 1853, a small agricultural fair was set up by the then-new County Agricultural Society of the County of Peel, and was held at the corner of Main and Queen streets. Grains, produce, roots, and dairy products were up for sale, a precursor of today's Brampton Farmers' Market. Horses and cattle, along with other lesser livestock was sold at market. This agricultural fair eventually became the modern Brampton Fall Fair. In that same year Brampton was incorporated as a village.
A federal grant allowed the village to create its first public library in 1887, which included 360 volumes from the pre-existing Mechanic's Institute (est 1858). In 1907, the library successfully received a grant from steel magnate Andrew Carnegie to build a new multi-person building, featuring what is now the Brampton Library.
A group of regional farmers in Brampton had trouble getting insurance from city-based companies. After several meetings in Clairville Hall, it was decided that they should found the County of Peel Farmers Mutual Fire Insurance Company. In 1955, the company moved to its third and current location, 103 Queen Street West, and renamed itself Peel Mutual Insurance Company. It reigns as the longest running company in modern Brampton. Harmsworth Decorating Centre was established in 1890, as Harmsworth and Son, operated out of the family's house on Queen Street West. The store purchased its current location on September 1, 1904, after a fire destroyed their original store. Purchased for $1400, the 24 Main Street South location is the longest operating retail business in what is now Brampton.
Brampton is a very unique community when speaking of Real Estate. You can find any type of dwelling or property in this region. You may start with the older downtown heritage homes that have great lots and a variety of sizes. Over he past 20 years you have seen an immense growth in this region of Large Condominium building, townhouse developments and single detached homes. The neighbourhoods have been well designed with a mixture of green space, industrial and local small stores and strip plazas scattered through out. Brampton has proven to be a great community to raise families and has everything you could be looking for. The lots in Brampton have been traditionally larger giving you the opportunity to have space.
Boundaries North - Mayfield Road
South - Highway 407
East - Highway 50
West - Mississauga Road
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Region of Peel
Brampton's City Hall
In 1974, the Ontario government decided to update Peel County's structure. Along with amalgamating a series of villages into the City of Mississauga, the new City of Brampton was created out of the greater portion of the Townships of Chinguacousy and Toronto Gore, including Bramalea and the other communities in those townships. The province converted Peel County into the Regional Municipality of Peel. Brampton retained its role as the administrative centre of Peel Region, which it already had as county seat. The regional council chamber, the Peel Regional Police force, the public health department, and the region's only major museum, the Peel Heritage Complex, are all located in Brampton.
This move was not met with open arms. Bramptonians feared urban sprawl would dissolve their town's personality, and Bramalea residents took pride in the built from scratch and organized structure that came with a new city. Many residents of the former community of Bramalea do not classify themselves as Brampton residents.
In 1972, Bramalea created its civic centre. Two years after it was built, when Brampton and Bramalea merged, the new city's council chambers and other facilities were created in the building, moving from the town of Brampton's modest downtown locale. The library systems of Brampton and Bramalea became one, creating a system of four locations.
The future of Peel Region as encompassing all of Brampton, Mississauga, and Caledon, has been called into question by some. Mississauga council, led by Mayor Hazel McCallion, voted in favour of becoming a single tier municipality and asked the provincial government to be separated from Peel Region, arguing that the city has outgrown the need for a regional layer of government and that Mississauga is now being held back by supporting Brampton and Caledon with its municipal taxes.
Brampton's only public higher education institution is Sheridan College, which also has a campus in Oakville. Founded in 1967, it is known for its animation and illustration courses, music theatre performance program, and craft and design program. Sheridan has the second largest school of Art and Design in North America.
Public schools are managed by the Peel District School Board. Local high schools include Cardinal Leger, Bramalea, Brampton Centennial, Central Peel, Chinguacousy, Fletcher's Meadow, Harold M. Brathwaite, Heart Lake, Holy Name of Mary, North Park, North Peel, Notre Dame, Sandalwood Heights, St. Augustine, St. Edmund Campion, St. Marguerite d'Youville, St. Thomas Aquinas, and Turner Fenton (Canada's only campus-based high school).
Public transit network
Brampton Transit bus at the Bramalea City Centre
Local transit is provided by Brampton Transit, with connections to other systems such as Mississauga Transit, York Region Transit, and Toronto Transit Commission. Brampton is currently planning a new Bus Rapid Transit system, called Acceleride along Main/Hurontario and Queen Streets, which would form the backbone to its bus network. Acceleride received funding from the provincial government in 2006 to begin implementation of this system. The fare is $3.00 for single adult transfer which is valid for 2 hours. There is GO Bus service to York University and subway stations at Yorkdale Mall and York Mills in Toronto.
Both Canadian National Railways and the Orangeville-Brampton Railway short line (formerly part of the Canadian Pacific Railway line) run through the city, CN's Intermodal Yards are located east of Airport Road between Steeles and the former Highway 7/Queen Street East. The CN Track from Toronto's Union Station, is the Georgetown GO Transit Rail Corridor providing commuter rail and bus services to and from Toronto with rail station stops at Bramalea, Downtown Brampton, and Mount Pleasant. VIA Rail connects through Brampton as part of the Quebec City-Windsor Corridor.
See also: Municipal expressways in Brampton, Ontario
Brampton is served by several major transportation routes: Highway 401 from Toronto is a short distance south in Mississauga, and can be reached by Highway 410, which runs north-south through the middle of the city. Highway 407 runs along the southern portion of the city, just north of the boundary with Mississauga. Steeles Avenue, which runs north of the 407, is another thoroughfare from Toronto. The former Highway 7 (now Regional Road 107 in Brampton) is another east-west corridor, (actually two, as it incorporates the eastern part of Queen Street and the western part of Bovaird Drive.