Horseshoe is a secondary region of Southern Ontario,
Canada, which lies at the western end of Lake
Ontario with outer
boundaries stretching south from
Lake Erie and north to Lake Scugog.
It includes Greater Toronto, Hamilton, and the Regional Municipality
of Niagara. The region is a part of the Quebec City–Windsor Corridor
and the Great Lakes Megalopolis.
The region is the most densely populated and industrialized in Canada.
With a population of 7,826,367 people in its core and 9,245,438 in its
greater area, the Golden
Horseshoe accounts for over 21% of the
Canada and more than 55% of Ontario's population. The
core of the region starts from Niagara Falls at the eastern end of the
Niagara Peninsula and extends west, wrapping around the western end of
Ontario at Hamilton and then turning northeast to
Toronto (on the
northwestern shore of Lake Ontario), before finally terminating at
Oshawa. The Greater Golden
Horseshoe is also used today to describe a
broader region that stretches from the area of the Trent–Severn
Waterway to at least the Grand River area, including centres outside
the core region (Brantford, Waterloo Region, Guelph, Barrie, and
Peterborough). The extended region's area covers approximately
33,500 km2 (13,000 sq mi), out of this, 7,300 km2
(2,800 sq mi) or approximately 22% of the area is covered by
the environmentally protected Greenbelt.
8.1 Census Metropolitan Areas
8.1.2 Greater Golden
10 External links
Horseshoe has been recognised as a geographic region since
the 1950s, but it was only on July 13, 2004 that a report from the
provincial Ministry of Public Infrastructure Renewal entitled Places
to Grow coined the term Greater Golden Horseshoe, extending the
boundaries west to Waterloo Region, north to Barrie/Simcoe County, and
northeast to the county and city of Peterborough. A subsequent
edition released February 16, 2005, broadened the term further, adding
Brant, Haldimand and Northumberland Counties to the now
quasi-administrative region. The Greater Golden
Horseshoe region is
officially designated in
Ontario Regulation 416/05 under the Places
to Grow Act. The designation Greater Golden
Horseshoe has legal
significance with respect to taxation: In April 2017, the Government
Ontario announced plans to impose a 15 per cent Non-Resident
Speculation Tax (NRST) on non-Canadian citizens, non-permanent
residents and non-Canadian corporations (with exceptions or rebates
for refugees, qualifying students and certain people working in
Ontario) buying residential properties containing one to six units
in the Greater Golden
The population of the Golden
Horseshoe was 7.82 million residents at
the 2016 census. The region is projected to grow to 11.5 million
people by 2031.
This section needs to be updated. Please update this article to
reflect recent events or newly available information. (July 2012)
Main articles: Economy of
Toronto and Economy of Hamilton, Ontario
The economy of this region is very diverse. The
Toronto Stock Exchange
is the third largest in North America by market capitalization (after
New York Stock Exchange
New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ), and seventh largest in the
Niagara Falls has one of the world's largest per-capita tourist
economies, benefiting from millions of tourists coming to see its
majestic waterfalls, shop in its numerous stores, and visit its many
attractions. The winemaking and fruit growing industries of the
Niagara Peninsula produce award-winning wines, which are beginning to
attract attention around the world, in particular the ice wine for
which the region is known.
Cities such as Hamilton, Oshawa, Oakville, Whitby and Kitchener all
contain major large-scale industrial production facilities, Hamilton
being dominated by the steel industry and Oakville and Oshawa
primarily in the automotive industry. Other significant
automotive-production facilities also exist in Brampton, St.
Catharines, Cambridge and Alliston. Hamilton and
Toronto also have two
of the largest seaports in Lake Ontario. The
Welland Canal system
handles tanker ship and recreational traffic through the Great Lakes.
Large rail and truck distribution facilities are located in Toronto,
Vaughan and Brampton. Food processing is also a key ingredient in the
economy. While manufacturing remains important to the economy of the
region, the manufacturing sector has experienced a significant decline
since 2000 as a result of unfavourable currency exchange rates,
increasing energy costs, and reduced demand from the United States,
which is by far the largest market for Ontario's goods.
As of 2014, sectors such as information technology, health care,
tourism, research and finance provide the bulk of growth. The suburban
cities of Brampton, Markham and
Mississauga are emerging as technology
The "horseshoe" part of the region's name is derived from the
characteristic horseshoe shape of the west end of Lake
Cootes Paradise between Burlington and Hamilton roughly positioned in
the centre. The "golden" part is historically attributed to the
region's wealth and prosperity, according to the Canadian Oxford
The phrase "Golden Horseshoe" was first used by Westinghouse Electric
Corporation president Herbert H. Rogge in a speech to the Hamilton
Chamber of Commerce on January 12, 1954:
Hamilton in 50 years will be the forward cleat in a 'golden horseshoe'
of industrial development from
Oshawa to the Niagara River ...
150 miles [240 km] long and 50 miles [80 km] wide ...
It will run from Niagara Falls on the south to about
Oshawa on the
north and take in numerous cities and towns already there, including
Hamilton and Toronto.
— Herbert H. Rogge
The speech writer who actually penned the phrase was Charles Hunter
MacBain, executive assistant to five Westinghouse presidents including
Aerial view of
Canada's Wonderland on May 2011
See also: Attractions in Toronto
Toronto is an alpha global city, known for its performing arts and
Toronto is one of the largest downtowns in North
America. The city is pedestrian friendly and has one of the lowest
crime rates in Canada; the 45 murders committed in 2011 is the lowest
for a major North American city.
Formerly the tallest freestanding structure on land in the world, the
CN Tower in
Toronto is among the most internationally notable
attractions in the Golden Horseshoe.
Toronto's Yorkville is an example of a world-class shopping district
in the city. The city also is home to several notable shopping malls
such as Yorkdale Shopping Centre,
Toronto Eaton Centre (which is North
America's busiest shopping mall), Scarborough Town Centre, and
Sherway Gardens. Located in the suburbs of
Bramalea City Centre
Bramalea City Centre in
Brampton and Square One Shopping
Centre in Mississauga, the largest suburban shopping mall in Ontario.
Pacific Mall, in Markham, is the largest ethnic shopping mall in
Large annual cultural festivals that draw tourists and local alike
Oktoberfest in Kitchener and the Peeks Caribbean Carnival
(formerly known as Caribana) and Taste of the Danforth in Toronto.
The Niagara Region has become one of the major wine-production areas
in Canada. The Golden
Horseshoe contains many small towns with
tourist-jammed, historic main streets, most notably the community of
Niagara-on-the-Lake, located at the mouth of the Niagara River.
Niagara Falls is one of the world's largest waterfalls, and attracts
millions to Clifton Hill, a neighbourhood featuring hundreds of
amusements, souvenir stores, restaurants and skyline-changing hotels.
Casinos here are also a huge draw.
The Niagara Escarpment, a world biosphere as designated by the United
Nations, runs from the north at Bruce Peninsula and then east through
the region cutting the Niagara Gorge at Niagara Falls. The Bruce Trail
runs along the escarpment through mostly protected woodlands. The
Cheltenham Badlands in Caledon is an environmentally degraded area
along the Niagara Escarpment. Similar protection of some wooded areas
exists on the
Oak Ridges Moraine
Oak Ridges Moraine running east–west in the north end
of the Greater
Toronto Area, although development pressures continue
to threaten the natural habitat.
Hamilton has the historical reputation of being a blue-collar city;
however, waterfront redevelopments and large-scale gentrification have
been rapidly changing the perception of the city, although it retains
a dominant industrial base.
Barrie and Peterborough are situated close
to scenic lakes, rivers and hills in the northern reaches of the
Golden Horseshoe, where all-year around recreation contributes to the
local economies, in addition to being major service centres.
There are a number of theme parks in the Golden Horseshoe, all of
which are seasonal. Canada's Wonderland, run by
Cedar Fair in Vaughan,
2 km (1.2 mi) north of
Vaughan Mills, is the largest and
most attended theme park in Canada, as well as the most attended
seasonal theme park in North America. Other theme parks include
Toronto (formerly Wild Water Kingdom) in Brampton, African
Lion Safari in Flamborough (part of Hamilton, though geographically
closer to Cambridge), and Marineland in Niagara Falls. Though not a
theme park per se, the
Exhibition Place hosts the annual Canadian
Horseshoe is home to many professional sports teams, most
of which are Toronto-based. These teams include:
Brampton Beast (ice hockey)
Hamilton Tiger-Cats (Canadian football)
K-W United FC (soccer)
Markham Thunder (ice hockey)
Oshawa Generals (ice hockey)
Raptors 905 (basketball)
Toronto Argonauts (Canadian football)
Toronto Blue Jays (baseball)
Toronto FC (soccer)
Toronto FC II (soccer)
Toronto Furies (ice hockey)
Toronto Lady Lynx (soccer)
Toronto Maple Leafs (ice hockey)
Toronto Marlies (ice hockey)
Toronto Raptors (basketball)
Toronto Rock (indoor lacrosse)
Toronto Wolfpack (Rugby League)
Horseshoe hosted the
2015 Pan American Games
2015 Pan American Games and the 2015
Parapan American Games.
University of Toronto's Convocation Hall
McMaster University promotes itself as the "most innovative"
university in Canada.
Horseshoe is home to several universities, including the
McMaster University in Hamilton, which are
ranked 1st and 4th in Canada, respectively, by the Academic Ranking of
World Universities. Other universities in the region include Brock
University, Trent University, York University, OCAD University,
Ontario Institute of Technology, and Ryerson University.
There is also a strong integration between the universities and
hospitals in the area, particularly in
Toronto and Hamilton. Both
cities have an extensive medical research core.
See also: Transportation in Toronto
Horseshoe is served by an extensive network of expressways,
the backbone of which is Highway 401, one of the widest and busiest
expressways in the world. Regional transit is provided by GO Transit
trains and buses, and by private bus operators Greyhound and Coach
Canada. Local transit is provided by municipal agencies, the largest
of which is the
Toronto Transit Commission, which operates three
subway lines and one light metro line and an extensive bus and
Toronto is currently the only city in the area with
a rail-based local transit network. However, several cities in the
region have light rail lines in the works. These include the
Hurontario LRT in Peel Region and B-Line in Hamilton.
The primary airport of the region is
Toronto Pearson International
Airport (officially Lester B. Pearson International Airport), located
in Mississauga, which is the busiest in
Canada and the 33rd busiest in
the world, handling over 44 million passengers in 2016, and offering
non-stop flights worldwide. Other regional airports of significance
John C. Munro Hamilton International Airport
John C. Munro Hamilton International Airport located in
southern Hamilton, which is a major regional freight and courier
location; Buttonville Airport and Billy Bishop airport in the Greater
Toronto Area, both of which mostly serve regional business travellers
but the latter being the third largest in the region for passenger
volume. Within driving distance are Buffalo Niagara International
Airport, near Niagara Falls, New York, in the United States. Buffalo
Niagara carries the second largest passenger volume in the region,
serving 5.5 million passengers in 2008. It is frequently used by
Canadian passengers flying to U.S. destinations.
Census Metropolitan Areas
Population figures are from the 2016 census.
St. Catharines-Niagara 406,074
See also: List of municipalities in the Greater
^ Canada, Government of Canada, Statistics. "Table 1.1Population and
demographic factors of growth by census metropolitan area, Canada".
www.statcan.gc.ca. Retrieved 2018-01-30.
^ "Portrait of the Canadian Population in 2006: Subprovincial
population dynamics, Greater Golden Horseshoe". Statistics Canada,
2006 Census of Population. 2007-03-13. Retrieved 2007-03-13.
^ "Places to Grow". Archived from the original on 2006-09-07.
Ontario Statutes and Regulations
^ Marr, Garry. "
Ontario slaps 15% tax on foreign buyers, expands rent
control in 16-point plan to cool housing". Financial Post. Retrieved
30 April 2017.
^ Office of the Premier (April 20, 2017). "News Release: Making
Housing More Affordable". Queen's Printer for Ontario. Retrieved 30
April 2017. introducing a 15 per cent Non-Resident Speculation Tax
(NRST) on non-Canadian citizens, non-permanent residents and
non-Canadian corporations buying residential properties containing one
to six units in the Greater Golden
^ Greater Golden Horseshoe, GTA and Hamilton Population, Household and
^ 2 Ontario
^ Barber, Katherine, ed. (2005). "Golden Horseshoe". Canadian Oxford
Dictionary (2nd ed.). Oxford
ISBN 9780195418163. Retrieved 11 September 2017. ORIGIN: So
called with reference to the area's wealth and horseshoe-like
^ "Fast Facts from Hamilton's Past". Archived from the original on
2006-09-05. Retrieved 2007-01-08.
^ Strada, Eric. "Looking Back: The Golden Truth". Biz Magazine.
Postmedia Network. Retrieved September 13, 2017.
Toronto 26th most dangerous city in Canada: report, CTV News, March
^ "Canadian Shopping Centre Study" (PDF). Retail Council of Canada.
December 2016. Retrieved 18 January 2017.
McMaster University Website". Archived from the original on
2007-06-29. Retrieved 2007-06-26.
^ Outhit, Jeff (Oct 27, 2011). "Rail yard purchased for rapid
transit". Waterloo Region Record. Retrieved 2012-04-08.
^ "Hurontario/Main Street Corridor Master Plan" (PDF). MMM Group.
October 2010. p. 578. Archived from the original (PDF) on
2012-03-24. Retrieved 2012-04-08.
Horseshoe travel guide from Wikivoyage
Subdivisions of Ontario
Leeds and Grenville
Lennox and Addington
Prescott and Russell
Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry
Ontario electoral districts
Former counties of Ontario
Geography of Ontario
Places adjacent to Golden Horseshoe
Ontario / Eastern Ontario
Ontario / Western New York
Upstate New York
Upstate New York / Niagara Frontier