Business Environment In Peterborough, Ontario

Peterborough is a city in central Ontario, Canada, about 125 kilometres northeast of Toronto. According to the 2021 Census, the population of the City of Peterborough was 83,651, while the population of the Peterborough Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) was 128,624.


Peterborough is known as the "gateway to the Kawarthas," a popular recreational region of the province. The city is named after Peter Robinson, an early Canadian politician who oversaw the first major immigration to the area in the 1800s. 


Peterborough has a rich history. In 1884, it was the first city in Canada to use electric streetlights, and in 1899, it was also home to the first electric car produced in Canada.


Today, Peterborough's economy is diverse, comprising manufacturing, technology, and service industries. Major employers include Siemens, Rolls-Royce, and General Electric. 


The city is also a hub for tourism, with access to the Trent-Severn Waterway and numerous parks and outdoor recreation opportunities. Peterborough is home to Trent University and Fleming College, contributing to its vibrant arts and culture scene.


Peterborough is a vibrant city with a rich history, diverse economy, and abundant natural and cultural attractions, making it an appealing destination in central Ontario.


History of Peterborough, Ontario, Canada

Peterborough is a city in central Ontario, Canada, about 125 kilometres northeast of Toronto. It has a rich history dating back to the early 19th century and has experienced significant economic, infrastructure, and cultural developments.


Early History and Settlement

Adam Scott settled in Peterborough in 1821 and founded a sawmill and gristmill at the site known as Scott's Plains. In 1825, almost 2,000 Irish immigrants settled in the area, and the town and county were renamed after Peter Robinson, the director of the group's immigration.


Industrial and Commercial Growth

Peterborough became a commercial and manufacturing center for the surrounding area, with industries such as electrical appliances, machinery, boats, marine equipment, hardware, lumber, watches, and food products. The city was also a tourist hub for the Kawartha Lakes region, attracting visitors with its natural beauty and recreational opportunities.


Infrastructure and Innovations

Peterborough was at the forefront of technological advancements, with notable achievements including:

  1. Electric Street Lighting: Peterborough became the first city in Canada to have electric street lighting in 1884.
  2. The Peterborough Lift Lock: Constructed in 1904, this hydraulic lift lock is the highest globally, rising 65 feet (19.8 m).
  3. Quaker Oats: The company invented rolled oats at its Peterborough headquarters.
  4. Trent University and Fleming College: These institutions were established in the city and contributed to its cultural and educational landscape.


Modern Developments

Today, Peterborough continues to evolve, with a diverse economy and a strong focus on education, healthcare, and tourism. The city celebrates its history and heritage through various landmarks and attractions, such as the Peterborough Lift Lock, the Hunter Street Bridge, and the Centennial Fountain at Little Lake.


Peterborough's history reflects its growth from a small settlement to a thriving city with a rich cultural and industrial heritage.


Geography of Peterborough, Ontario, Canada

Peterborough is located in central Ontario, Canada, approximately 125 kilometres northeast of Toronto. It is situated on the Otonabee River and is considered the "gateway to the Kawarthas," a popular recreational region of the province.


The city has an area of 61.83 square kilometres, while the larger Peterborough Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) covers 508.98 square kilometres. Peterborough's elevation is around 195 meters above sea level.


Peterborough's humid continental climate is in the St. Lawrence Lowlands physiographic region. The city experiences four seasons: warm summers and cold, snowy winters.


Peterborough's geography is defined by its location in central Ontario, along the Otonabee River and within the Kawartha Lakes region, which has shaped its history, economy, and identity as a city.


Demographics of Peterborough, Ontario, Canada

The demographics of Peterborough, Ontario, Canada are as follows:



  • 2021 Census: The population of the City of Peterborough was 83,651, with a population density of 1,291.7/km² (3,345.5/sq mi).
  • 2021 Census Metropolitan Area (CMA): The population of the Peterborough CMA was 128,624, with a population density of 85.3/km² (220.8/sq mi).


Age Distribution

  • 2021 Census: The age distribution of Peterborough was:
    • 0 to 14 years: 12,120
    • 15 to 64 years: 52,130
    • 65 years and over: 20,550.


These demographics provide a comprehensive overview of the population, age distribution, ethnicity, religion, language, education, and employment in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada.


Economy of Peterborough, Ontario, Canada

The economy of Peterborough, Ontario, Canada, is diverse and growing, with a focus on key sectors such as aerospace, agriculture, advanced manufacturing, tourism, and small business (entrepreneurship). Here are some key points about the economy of Peterborough:

  1. Major Employers:
    • PepsiCo Foods (Quaker)
    • General Electric
    • FisherCast Ltd. (A Dynacast Company)
    • Siemens Milltronics
    • Minute Maid
    • SGS Lakefield Research
    • Peterborough Regional Health Centre
    • Public School Board
    • Sir Sandford Fleming College
    • City of Peterborough
    • AON Inc.
    • BWXT Canada Ltd.
    • Central East Community Access Centre
    • Fleming College
    • Flying Colours Corporation
    • General Electric Canada
    • Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board
    • McCloskey International
    • Ministry of Natural Resources
    • PepsiCo/Quaker.
  2. Economic Growth:
    • The city has a diversified economy valued at $5.93 billion in 2021, forecasted to grow by 26% by 2030.
    • Peterborough and the Kawarthas are ranked the #2 city in Canada for water-based tourism. Over 3 million visitors annually spend more than $300 million in the local economy.
  3. Tourism:
    • Tourism significantly contributes to the local economy, focusing on experiential tourism and sustainable product development.
    • Peterborough & the Kawarthas Tourism (PKT) is the Official Destination Marketing Organization, actively working with local businesses and industry partners to support the visitor economy.
  4. Education and Talent:
    • The region is home to three internationally recognized post-secondary educational institutions, providing a strong talent pool for businesses.
  5. Infrastructure and Utilities:
    • Peterborough's local electricity distribution company is Hydro One as of April 2020.
  6. Regional Development:
    • Peterborough & the Kawarthas Economic Development (PKED) is the lead regional economic development agency. It focuses on growing the local economy through key sectors and supporting local businesses.


These details highlight Peterborough's diverse and growing economy, which focuses on key sectors and strongly emphasizes tourism and education.


Education in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada

The key information about education in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada:


Peterborough is home to several high-quality post-secondary institutions that contribute significantly to the city's economy and talent pool:

  • Trent University: An internationally recognized university that provides a transformative learning experience and prepares students for leadership and career success.
  • Fleming College: An innovative college that empowers students with real-world experience and skills to build better lives, communities, and a better world.
  • Seneca College's School of Aviation: A world-class aviation school and national leader in aviation education, known for its quality graduates, expert faculty, and strong industry partnerships.


In addition to the post-secondary options, Peterborough has a robust elementary and secondary school system: There are three publicly funded school boards in the city - the Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board (public), the Peterborough Victoria Northumberland Clarington Catholic District School Board (Catholic), and the Conseil scolaire de district catholique centre-sud (French).


Peterborough offers a diverse and high-quality education system, from elementary and secondary schools to renowned post-secondary institutions, providing students with various educational opportunities.


Transport System of Peterborough, Ontario, Canada

The transport system in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada, includes several options for local and long-distance travel. Here are the key details:


Local Transportation

  • Public Transit: Peterborough Transit operates a public bus system with 11 main routes, three community bus routes, and 2 Selwyn "The Link" routes. The buses are wheelchair accessible and have bike racks for intermodal travel.
  • Taxis: Private taxi companies are available, and you can also use ride-hailing apps like URide or YDrive.
  • Walking and Cycling: Peterborough has a network of walking trails and bike lanes, making it a pleasant city to explore on foot or by bike.


Long-Distance Travel

  • Bus: Greyhound and GO Transit operate bus services from Peterborough to other Ontario cities and North America.
  • Train: VIA Rail and GO Transit provide train services from nearby stations in Cobourg, Port Hope, Oshawa, and Toronto.
  • Air: The nearest major airport is Pearson International Airport in Toronto, with airport shuttle services from Peterborough.


Special Services

  • Handi-Van Paratransit: A special service for individuals with physical challenges who cannot use regular transit buses.
  • The Link Bus Service: Connects Peterborough to Curve Lake First Nation, Lakefield, Ennismore, and Bridgenorth.
  • Wheelchair-accessible caremobiles: These vehicles provide transportation for individuals with physical challenges to medical appointments, education, shopping, and social activities.


Future Plans

  • Enhancing Public Transportation: The city aims to improve public transportation by making it more accessible, affordable, efficient, and effective.
  • Active Transportation: The city is working to enhance cycling infrastructure and promote active transportation options like walking and cycling.


Overall, Peterborough has a well-connected transport system that caters to various needs and preferences, making it easy to get around the city and beyond.


Living in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada

Peterborough, Ontario, Canada, is a vibrant city with a unique blend of urban, rural, and lakeside living. Here are some key points about living in Peterborough:

  • Cost of Living: The overall cost of living in Peterborough is lower than in nearby metropolitan areas like the GTA, Barrie, and Kingston.
  • Job Opportunities: Peterborough has a strong job market with major employers like Trent University, Peterborough Utilities Group, and OPG, as well as a thriving startup scene.
  • Economic Base: The city's economy is based on its historical manufacturing base but has been diversifying recently.
  • Excellent Education: The city offers high-quality educational opportunities, making it a great place to raise a family.
  • Outdoor Recreation: Peterborough offers numerous recreational opportunities, including swimming, fishing, hiking, and skiing.
  • Arts and Culture: The city has a thriving arts and culture scene with various festivals and events throughout the year.
  • Community: Peterborough is known for its friendly community, low crime rate and strong sense of community.
  • Quality of Life Indicators: The city has a high quality of life, with a mix of urban and rural living and access to lakeside recreation.
  • Public Transit: Peterborough has a public bus system with 11 main and three community bus routes.
  • Private Transportation: The city is accessible by car, with several major highways passing through it, and taxi and ride-hailing services are available.
  • Healthcare Facilities: Peterborough is home to the Peterborough Regional Health Centre (PRHC), which offers various healthcare services.
  • Dining and Nightlife: Peterborough offers a variety of dining options, including local pubs and restaurants. There are also several movie theaters and live music venues.


Peterborough offers a unique blend of urban and rural living, with a strong job market, excellent education, and a vibrant arts and culture scene.


Healthcare in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada

Peterborough, Ontario, Canada, offers a comprehensive healthcare system with various services and facilities. Here are the key points about healthcare in Peterborough:


Hospitals and Healthcare Facilities

  • Peterborough Regional Health Centre (PRHC): A regional hospital providing acute healthcare services to over 300,000 people in the area.
  • Peterborough Family Health Team (PFHT): Offers a team-based approach to primary care with multiple locations across the city and county.


Healthcare Services

  • Primary Care: Peterborough has a strong primary care system with family health teams and walk-in clinics.
  • Specialized Services: PRHC provides specialized services like emergency care, surgical services, and mental health services.
  • Community Health Services: Peterborough Public Health offers various programs and services, including healthy eating workshops, poverty reduction initiatives, and oral health clinics.


Access to Healthcare

  • Health Insurance: The Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP) covers most medical services for eligible residents, with a three-month waiting period for new residents.
  • Ambulance Services: Emergency ambulance services are available, but patients must pay a fee.
  • Poison Control: The Ontario Poison Centre provides advice on poison-related emergencies.


Healthcare Resources

  • Ontario 2-1-1: A confidential service for finding local health and community services.
  • Healthcare Directories: Online directories help residents find healthcare services in Peterborough and surrounding areas.


Patient Support

  • Patient and Family Advisory Council (PFAC): This organization provides patient-centered care and support through patient and family advisory committees.
  • Volunteer Services: PRHC offers volunteer opportunities for those interested in supporting healthcare services.


Community Engagement

  • Healthcare Partnerships: Peterborough OHT (POHT) partners with local health professionals, organizations, and community members to provide integrated care.
  • Community Events: PRHC participates in community events and initiatives to promote healthcare awareness and support.


Overall, Peterborough's healthcare system is well-established and comprehensive, focusing on primary care, specialized services, and community engagement.


Tourist places in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada

Peterborough, Ontario, Canada, offers a variety of tourist attractions and activities that cater to different interests and preferences. Here are some of the top tourist places in Peterborough:

  1. Riverview Park & Zoo: A 55-acre zoo with mini-train rides, an F-86 Sabre Jet, and a kid's water play area.
  2. Peterborough Lift Lock: A historic site and a popular spot for boating and water activities.
  3. The Canadian Canoe Museum: A museum showcasing the history and significance of canoes in Canada.
  4. Del Crary Park: A beautiful park with a playground, picnic areas, and a scenic trail along the Otonabee River.
  5. Jackson Park: A 55-acre park with a pond, hiking trails, and picnic areas.
  6. Peterborough Museum & Archives: A museum showcasing the history and culture of Peterborough.
  7. Hutchison House: A historic house museum that offers guided tours and exhibits.
  8. Liftlock & the Riverboat Cruises: A popular spot for boat cruises and water activities.
  9. Galaxy Cinemas Peterborough: A movie theatre with multiple screens and various films.
  10. Canada's Dinosaur Park: An amusement park with dinosaur-themed rides and attractions.


These are just a few of the many tourist attractions and activities that Peterborough has to offer.


Local Food of Peterborough, Ontario, Canada

Peterborough, Ontario, Canada, has a vibrant local food scene celebrating the region's agricultural bounty and promoting sustainable food systems. Here are some key points about local food in Peterborough:


Local Farms and Community Shared Agriculture Programs

  • Local Farms: Peterborough has numerous local farms that offer fresh produce, meats, dairy products, and other agricultural products directly to consumers.
  • Community Shared Agriculture (CSA) Programs: Many farms in Peterborough offer CSA programs, where members pay a fee at the beginning of the growing season for a share of the anticipated harvest.


Farmers' Markets

  • Peterborough Farmers' Market: This market offers fresh produce, baked goods, and local products directly from farmers and artisans.
  • Peterborough Regional Farmers' Market: This market provides various local products, including fresh produce, meats, dairy products, and baked goods.


Specialty Stores and Restaurants

  • Specialty Stores: Peterborough has several specialty stores, such as health food stores and natural food markets, that focus on local and organic products.
  • Restaurants: Many restaurants in Peterborough emphasize local and seasonal ingredients in their menus, offering a variety of cuisines from around the world.


Initiatives and Organizations

  • Food in Peterborough: This initiative aims to promote local food systems and ensure everyone can access fresh and healthy food.
  • Nourish: Nourish is a program that provides access to healthy, affordable food to those in need.
  • Peterborough Alliance for Food & Farming (PAFF): PAFF facilitates collaboration to strengthen sustainable local food systems.


Overall, Peterborough's local food scene is characterized by its emphasis on sustainability, community engagement, and access to fresh and healthy food for all.


You can also check the information regarding Perth, Ontario

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