Friday, 12 July 2013

Geography

King Street South in the heart of Uptown Waterloo.

Waterloo's city centre is located near the intersection of King and Erb streets. Since 1961, the centrepiece has been the Waterloo Town Square shopping centre, which underwent a thorough renovation in 2006. Much of the mall was torn down and has been replaced by buildings that emphasize street-facing storefronts.

Residents refer to the Waterloo city centre as "uptown" (often capitalized), while "downtown" is reserved for the Kitchener city centre.

The city centre was once along Albert Street, near the Marsland Centre and the Waterloo Public Library. The town hall, fire hall, and farmers' market were located there. Amidst some controversy, all were demolished between 1965 and 1969.

Parks

There are five main parks in the city. RIM Park occupies 2 square kilometres (500 acres) and is home to a variety of indoor and outdoor sporting facilities, including an eighteen-hole golf course, and the heritage Martin Farm House.

Waterloo Park is in Uptown Waterloo, and contains historical buildings, a bandshell, animal displays, and the Lions' Lagoon water park in its 45 hectares (110 acres). A grandstand was built in 1895 to house spectators for sporting events at the park's former oval track, but it was torn down in 1953. A Park Inn refreshment booth opened in June 1956, designed by a former Alderman, Charlie Voelker. It operates from May until September. The park is also known for its light displays during the Christmas holiday season, known as "Wonders of Winter".

Bechtel Park occupies 44 hectares (110 acres) and has many outdoor sporting facilities along with wetlands, meadows and hardwood forest. The park also includes an off-leash dog park, and adjacent city-operated cemetery. Hillside Park covers 25 hectares (62 acres) and includes two lighted ball diamonds.

Lexington Park includes a ball diamond and a soccer pitch on the former site of the K-W Municipal Airport. The 3 square kilometre (725 acre) Laurel Creek Conservation Area lies in the northwest of the city.

Waterways

The Grand River flows southward along the east side of the city. Its most significant tributary within the city is Laurel Creek, whose source lies just to the west of the city limits and its mouth just to the east, and crosses much of the city's central areas including the University of Waterloo lands and Waterloo Park; it flows under the uptown area in a culvert. In the west end of the city, the Waterloo Moraine provides over 300,000 people in the region with drinking water. Much of the gently hilly Waterloo Moraine underlies existing developed areas. Ongoing urban growth, mostly in the form of low-density residential suburbs (in accordance with requests by land developers), will cover increasing amounts of the remaining undeveloped portions of the Waterloo Moraine.

Uptown looking Northwest from the Uptown Parkade. Landmarks visible include the Marsland Centre on the extreme left and Waterloo City Hall on the extreme right. Climate Climate data for Waterloo Regional Airport Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year Record high °C (°F) 14.2 (57.6) 13.7 (56.7) 24.4 (75.9) 29.2 (84.6) 32.0 (89.6) 36.1 (97) 36.0 (96.8) 36.5 (97.7) 33.3 (91.9) 29.4 (84.9) 21.1 (70) 18.7 (65.7) 36.5 (97.7) Average high °C (°F) −3.1 (26.4) −2 (28) 3.3 (37.9) 11.1 (52) 18.6 (65.5) 23.4 (74.1) 25.9 (78.6) 24.7 (76.5) 20.2 (68.4) 13.4 (56.1) 6.1 (43) −0.2 (31.6) 11.8 (53.2) Daily mean °C (°F) −7.1 (19.2) −6.4 (20.5) −1.2 (29.8) 5.8 (42.4) 12.5 (54.5) 17.3 (63.1) 19.8 (67.6) 18.7 (65.7) 14.3 (57.7) 8.2 (46.8) 2.3 (36.1) −3.8 (25.2) 6.7 (44.1) Average low °C (°F) −11 (12) −10.7 (12.7) −5.8 (21.6) 0.4 (32.7) 6.3 (43.3) 11.2 (52.2) 13.7 (56.7) 12.7 (54.9) 8.4 (47.1) 2.9 (37.2) −1.5 (29.3) −7.3 (18.9) 1.6 (34.9) Record low °C (°F) −31.9 (−25.4) −29.2 (−20.6) −25.4 (−13.7) −16.1 (3) −3.9 (25) −0.6 (30.9) 5.0 (41) 1.1 (34) −3.7 (25.3) −8.3 (17.1) −15.4 (4.3) −27.2 (−17) −31.9 (−25.4) Precipitation mm (inches) 64.4 (2.535) 51.5 (2.028) 69.9 (2.752) 76.9 (3.028) 78.3 (3.083) 81.3 (3.201) 91.8 (3.614) 86.3 (3.398) 85.8 (3.378) 65.6 (2.583) 82.7 (3.256) 73.6 (2.898) 907.9 (35.744) Rainfall mm (inches) 27.9 (1.098) 25.6 (1.008) 45.1 (1.776) 69.1 (2.72) 77.9 (3.067) 81.3 (3.201) 91.8 (3.614) 86.3 (3.398) 85.8 (3.378) 64.5 (2.539) 70.4 (2.772) 39.5 (1.555) 765 (30.12) Snowfall cm (inches) 43.5 (17.13) 30.6 (12.05) 24.1 (9.49) 7.8 (3.07) 0.3 (0.12) 0 (0) 0 (0) 0 (0) 0 (0) 1.2 (0.47) 13.7 (5.39) 38.5 (15.16) 159.5 (62.8) Avg. precipitation days (≥ 0.2 mm) 18.3 14.3 14.2 13.4 12.0 11.7 10.4 11.0 11.5 13.3 16.1 18.1 164.4 Avg. rainy days (≥ 0.2 mm) 5.1 4.3 7.5 11.3 12.0 11.7 10.4 11.0 11.5 13.1 11.0 6.7 115.6 Avg. snowy days (≥ 0.2 cm) 16.7 12.6 8.9 3.3 0.1 0 0 0 0 0.83 7.1 14.6 64.1  % humidity 86.4 83.6 85.1 84.2 84.9 87.3 90.5 94.0 93.9 90.9 87.5 87.0 87.9 Source: Environment Canada

Waterloo has a humid continental climate of the warm summer subtype (Dfb under the K√∂ppen climate classification); this means that there are large seasonal differences, usually very warm to hot (and humid) summers and cold (to very cold) winters. Compared to the rest of Canada, it has moderate weather. Winter temperatures generally last from the middle of December until the middle of March, while summer temperatures generally occur between the middle of May to close to the end of September. Temperatures can exceed 30℃ (86℉) several times a year. Waterloo has approximately 140 frost-free days per year.

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