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Ottawa (/ˈɒtəwə/ (About this soundlisten), /ˈɒtəwɑː/; French pronunciation: ​[ɔtawa]) is the capital city of Canada. It stands on the south bank of the Ottawa River in the eastern portion of southern Ontario. Ottawa borders Gatineau, Quebec; the two form the core of the Ottawa–Gatineau census metropolitan area (CMA) and the National Capital Region (NCR). As of 2016, Ottawa had a city population of 934,243 and a metropolitan population of 1,323,783 making it the fourth-largest city and the fifth-largest CMA in Canada. In June 2019, the City of Ottawa estimated it had surpassed a population of 1 million.

Founded in 1826 as Bytown, and incorporated as Ottawa in 1855, the city has evolved into the political centre of Canada. Its original boundaries were expanded through numerous annexations and were ultimately replaced by a new city incorporation and amalgamation in 2001 which significantly increased its land area. The city name "Ottawa" was chosen in reference to the Ottawa River, the name of which is derived from the Algonquin Odawa, meaning "to trade".

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Timber raft parliament buildings 1882.jpg
The Ottawa River timber trade, was the nineteenth century production of wood products by Canada on areas of the Ottawa River destined for British and American markets. It was the major industry of the historical colonies of Upper Canada and Lower Canada and it created an entrepreneur known as a lumber baron. The trade in squared timber and later sawed lumber led to population growth and prosperity to communities in the Ottawa Valley, especially the city of Ottawa, the capital of Canada. The product was chiefly red and white pine. The industry lasted until around 1900 as both markets and supplies decreased. Entrepreneurs in the United States at that time then began to build their operations near the Ottawa River, creating some of the world's largest sawmills at the time. These men, known as lumber barons, with names such as John Rudolphus Booth and Henry Franklin Bronson created mills which contributed to the prosperity and growth of Ottawa. The sawed lumber industry benefited from transportation improvements, first the Rideau Canal linking Ottawa with Kingston, Ontario on Lake Ontario, and much later railways that began to be created between Canadian cities.
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Steve MacLean.jpg
Steven Glenwood MacLean (born December 14, 1954) is a Canadian astronaut. He is the current President of the Canadian Space Agency, appointed on September 2, 2008. He was born in Ottawa, Ontario and is married to Nadine Wielgopolski of Hull, Quebec.

Maclean attended Merivale High School in Nepean. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in physics in 1977 and a doctorate in physics in 1983 from York University in Toronto, Ontario. In 1977, he received the President’s Award at York University (Murray G. Ross Award). He is a recipient of a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council post graduate scholarship in 1980. In December 1983, MacLean was one of six astronauts selected by the National Research Council of Canada.

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  • ...that Forbes Magazine recently rated Ottawa the 4th cleanest city out of 300 cities worldwide?

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Ottawa river overlooking Parliament hill to the left and the Canadian Museum of Civilization to the right.

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