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View our Careers website. Before the end of the war he would command the Canadian Corps. Since World War II the Victoria area has seen relatively steady growth, becoming home to two major universities. Since the s the western suburbs have been incorporated as new municipalities, such as Colwood and Langford , which are known collectively as the Western Communities. Greater Victoria periodically experiences calls for the amalgamation of the thirteen municipal governments within the Capital Regional District. The landscape of Victoria was formed by vulcanism followed by water in various forms.
Pleistocene glaciation put the area under a thick ice cover, the weight of which depressed the land below present sea level. These glaciers also deposited stony sandy loam till. As they retreated, their melt water left thick deposits of sand and gravel. Marine clay settled on what would later become dry land.
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Post-glacial rebound exposed the present-day terrain to air, raising beach and mud deposits well above sea level. The resulting soils are highly variable in texture, and abrupt textural changes are common. In general, clays are most likely to be encountered in the northern part of town and in depressions. The southern part has coarse-textured subsoils and loamy topsoils. Sandy loams and loamy sands are common in the eastern part adjoining Oak Bay. Victoria's soils are relatively unleached and less acidic than soils elsewhere on the British Columbia Coast. Their thick dark topsoils denoted a high level of fertility which made them valuable for farming until urbanization.
During this time the city went days without freezing, starting on 23 December and ending 10 December The highest temperature ever recorded at Victoria Gonzales was Due to the rain shadow effect of the nearby Olympic Mountains, Victoria is the driest location on the British Columbia coast and one of the driest in the region. One feature of Victoria's climate is its distinct dry and rainy seasons.
Nearly two-thirds of the annual precipitation falls during the four wettest months, November to February. Victoria experiences the driest summers in Canada outside of the extreme northern reaches of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut.
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When snow does fall, it rarely lasts long on the ground. That amount places Victoria 3rd for biggest snowfall among major cities in Canada. With 2, hours of bright sunshine annually during the last available measurement period, Victoria was the second sunniest city in British Columbia after Cranbrook. In July , Victoria received Victoria's equable climate has also added to its reputation as the "City of Gardens". The city takes pride in the many flowers that bloom during the winter and early spring, including crocuses, daffodils, early-blooming rhododendrons, cherry and plum trees.
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Every February there is an annual "flower count" in what for the rest of the country and most of the province is still the dead of winter. Due to its mild climate, Victoria and its surrounding area southeastern Vancouver Island, Gulf Islands , and parts of the Lower Mainland and Sunshine Coast are also home to many rare, native plants found nowhere else in Canada, including Quercus garryana Garry oak , Arctostaphylos columbiana hairy manzanita , and Canada's only broad-leaf evergreen tree, Arbutus menziesii Pacific madrone.
Many of these species exist here, at the northern end of their range, and are found as far south as southern California and parts of Mexico. Non-native plants grown in Victoria include the cold-hardy palm Trachycarpus fortunei , which can be found in gardens and public areas of Victoria.
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One of these Trachycarpus palms stands in front of City Hall. The following is a list of neighbourhoods in the City of Victoria, as defined by the city planning department. The population of Victoria was 80, in The Victoria Census Metropolitan Area , comprising thirteen municipalities informally referred to as Greater Victoria , has a population of , and is the largest urban area on Vancouver Island. The Capital Regional District , which includes additional rural areas, has a total population of , Victoria is known for its disproportionately large retiree population.
Some 6. The city also boasts the country's third-highest concentration of people 65 and older In January , a volunteer study by the Victoria Cool Aid Society found the homeless population to be approximately individuals. Despite Victoria's reputation as a tourist destination, pervasive homelessness and panhandling are serious problems in the downtown area as is "open-air" drug use. The city's chief industries are technology, food products, tourism, education, federal and provincial government administration and services.
Other sectors of the Greater Victoria area economy include: investment and banking, online book publishing, various public and private schools, food products manufacturing, light aircraft manufacturing, technology products, various high tech firms in pharmaceuticals and computers , engineering , architecture and telecommunications.
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Mayfair, one of the first major shopping centres in Victoria, first opened as an outdoor strip mall on 16 October with 27 stores. Mayfair was enclosed and renovated into an indoor mall in Victoria is a major tourism destination with over 3. Many whale watching tour companies operate from this harbour due to the whales often present near its coast.
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Downtown Victoria also serves as Greater Victoria's regional downtown, where many night clubs, theatres, restaurants and pubs are clustered, and where many regional public events occur. Canada Day fireworks displays, Symphony Splash , and many other music festivals and cultural events draw tens of thousands of Greater Victorians and visitors to the downtown core. The Rifflandia and Electronic Music Festival are other music events that draw crowds to the downtown core.
The city and metro region has hosted high-profile sports events including the Commonwealth Games , the Scotties Tournament of Hearts , the Ford World Men's Curling Championship tournament, and Skate Canada. The city is also a destination for conventions, meetings, and conferences, including a North Atlantic Treaty Organization military chief of staff meeting held at the Hotel Grand Pacific. Every year, the Swiftsure International Yacht Race attracts boaters from around the world to participate in the boat race in the waters off of Vancouver Island, and the Victoria Dragon Boat Festival brings over 90 teams from around North America.
The Tall Ships Festival brings sailing ships to the city harbour. The Port of Victoria consists of three parts, the Outer Harbour , used by deep sea vessels, the Inner and Upper Harbours, used by coastal and industrial traffic. It is protected by a breakwater with a deep and wide opening. The port is a working harbour, tourist attraction and cruise destination. Esquimalt Harbour is also a well-protected harbour with a large graving dock and shipbuilding and repair facilities.
Every BC Day weekend, the Symphony mounts Symphony Splash, an outdoor event that includes a performance by the orchestra sitting on a barge in Victoria's Inner Harbour. Streets in the local area are closed, as each year approximately 40, people attend a variety of concerts and events throughout the day.
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The Bastion Theatre, a professional dramatic company, functioned in Victoria through the s and s and performed high quality dramatic productions but ultimately declared bankruptcy in Reborn as The New Bastion Theatre in the company struggled for two more years before closing operations in The venue was renamed the Belfry Theatre in as the company began producing its own shows. The Belfry's mandate is to produce contemporary plays with an emphasis on new Canadian plays.
Its mandate is to support the island's military community by performing at military dinners, parades and ceremonies, and other events. The annual multi-day Rifflandia Music Festival is one of Canada's largest modern, rock and pop music festivals.
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Canadian director Atom Egoyan was raised in Victoria. Actor Cory Monteith from the television series Glee was raised in Victoria. Nobel laureate Alice Munro lived in Victoria during the years when she published her first story collections and co-founded Munro's Books. Victoria resident Stanley Evans has written a series of mysteries featuring a Coast Salish character, Silas Seaweed, who works as an investigator with the Victoria Police Department.
Gayleen Froese 's novel Touch is set in Victoria. The comedy troupe LoadingReadyRun is based in Victoria. Beacon Hill Park is the central city's main urban green space. Its area of 75 hectares acres adjacent to Victoria's southern shore includes numerous playing fields, manicured gardens, exotic species of plants and animals such as wild peacocks, a petting zoo, and views of the Strait of Juan de Fuca and the Olympic Mountains in Washington across it. The sport of cricket has been played in Beacon Hill Park since the midth century.
The extensive system of parks in Victoria also includes a few areas of natural Garry oak meadow habitat, an increasingly scarce ecosystem that once dominated the region. The oldest and most intact Chinatown in Canada is within downtown. Numerous other buildings of historic importance or interest are also in central Victoria, including: the St.
Ann; the St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church;  the Metropolitan Methodist Church now the Victoria Conservatory of Music ,  which is publicly open for faculty, student, and guest performances, also acts as Camosun College Music Department; the St. Andrew's Cathedral ; and the Crystal Gardens, originally a saltwater swimming pool, restored as a conservatory and most recently a tourist attraction called the B. Experience, which closed down in CFB Esquimalt navy base, in the adjacent municipality of Esquimalt , has a base museum dedicated to naval and military history, in the Naden part of the base.
Victoria's climate, location and variety of facilities make it ideal for many recreational activities including rock climbing , hiking , kayaking , golf , water sports , informal team sports and jogging. Victoria is also known as the Cycling Capital of Canada,  with hundreds of kilometres of bicycle paths, bike lanes and bike routes in the city, including the Galloping Goose Regional Trail.
There are mountain biking trails at Mount Work Regional Park ,  and Victoria is quickly becoming a bike tourism destination. Opened in , Western Speedway is the oldest speedway in western Canada, and features stock car racing , drag racing , demolition derbies and other events.
It replaced the former Victoria Memorial Arena , which was constructed by efforts of World War II veterans as a monument to fallen comrades. Victoria has also been a destination for numerous high-profile international sporting events. Victoria was also the first city location of the cross Canada Winter Olympics torch relay that occurred before the start of the Winter Olympics. The city has also been home to numerous high-profile sports teams in its history. Victoria has been home to many accomplished athletes that have participated in professional sports or the Olympics.
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