Vancouver is the eighth largest city in Canada with a population of 578,000 (2006 census) and has one of the mildest climates in Canada with temperatures averaging around 3 degrees celsius in January and 18 degrees celsius in July. It covers 114.7 sq km (44.3 sq miles), and is part of Metro Vancouver, the third largest metropolitan area in Canada, with a population of 2.1 million (2006 census).
Vancouver has Canada's largest and most diversified port, trading $75 billion in goods annually. It is home to a variety of different industries, including the mining, forest, biotech, film and software industries.
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Archaeological evidence shows that the Coast Salish people had settled the Vancouver area by 500 BC. In the 1870s, Vancouver was founded as a sawmill settlement called Granville. And in 1886, the city was incorporated and renamed Vancouver after Captain George Vancouver, a British naval captain who explored the area in 1792.
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The City of Vancouver is governed by Mayor Gregor Robertson and 10 Councillors, all who serve a three-year term. In the province of British Columbia, the City of Vancouver is governed by a provincial statute called the Vancouver Charter .
The City of Vancouver and its staff have won numerous awards for its ingenuity and leadership in various programs and activities.
Vancouver has more than 200 diverse parks, but Vancouver's most famous park is Stanley Park. One of the largest urban parks in the world, with 150 year old forest, 8.85 km of seawall, and many popular attractions.