Moncton is larger than Fredericton. How would you feel if I told you that the population of Moncton is 48,819 while that of Fredericton is 50,004? I know this will come as a shock to some people. Moncton makes up 21.72% of New Brunswick’s total population while Fredericton only accounts for 17.7%. However, one might be wondering why there are such unusual discrepancies in size between these two cities and whether or not this trend can be seen across Canada and the rest of the world at large. This article will explore those questions as well as what one might expect by studying both cities’ populations in light of such statistics before getting into other related topics.
The first thing to realize about this topic is that the size of a city has little to do with city planning, development and layout. This is because the size of a city is primarily determined by its geography, environment and available resources in addition to political and economic factors. For example, Los Angeles, California which has more than three million people living in its greater metropolitan region is surrounded by several large mountain ranges while Calgary, Alberta which has 1.06 million people and sits on one of the largest natural gas reserves in the world (Western Canada Sedimentary Basin) has less than 100 miles from its mountains (Rockies) to create a “natural” boundary between Alberta’s oil industry centers and the rest of Canada. In addition, the fact that Calgary is a “mid-western” city, far away from the ocean and with very little fishing potential (meaning there is no need to fish on a large scale in/near Calgary) certainly doesn’t hurt as well.
In contrast, Moncton and Fredericton’s populations are largely determined by their proximity to each other as well as the Saint John River which runs through both of them. This part of New Brunswick is not only one of the most picturesque regions in North America but also the furthest inland a human can be while still being only an hour or so away from an ocean harbor. In fact, there are many rivers and streams in this area and the Saint John is the longest; while not wide, it is very deep. Thus, this makes it the perfect location for a large harbor as well as a means to transport goods over land to other areas in Canada and into the United States. The Saint John River also has vast areas of fertile soil both upriver (towards Fredericton) and downriver (towards St George) which could be used for local agriculture or lumber industry as well.