The City of Burlington has the distinction of having one of only a few naturally occurring magnetic hills in Canada. The Magnetic Hill is in North Burlington along a rural section of King Road which runs from Burlington Bay to the top of the Niagara Escarpment. The Magnetic Hill is just 4 kms from downtown Burlington.
Shortly after moving to Burlington in 1967 I heard rumours about a magnetic hill in North Burlington. Even though nobody knew exactly where it was located most knew that it was somewhere on the Dump Road as it was known in those days because that is where the entrance to the Burlington Landfill Site used to be located. Since the closing of the dump in 1988 it is known again by the loftier official name King Road.
In those early days I must have stopped at every hump in the road between the North Service Road and the top of the Escarpment without ever finding forces, other than my car engine, capable of moving my car uphill. It was not until 1985 when a local newspaper published a story about Burlingtons own Magnetic Hill that I learned about the exact location. The next day I set out to find the ellusive hill but soon it became apparent that I wasnt the only one who had read the article. Seeing all the traffic I turned around and went home. I went back a few days later and had the hill all to myself!!
Burlington is a city located in at the western end of Lake Ontario. Physically, Burlington lies between the north shore of Lake Ontario, the Niagara Escarpment, Hamilton to the west and Oakville to the east. Economically, Burlington is strategically located near the geographic centre of the Golden Horseshoe, a densely populated and industrialized region home to over 8 million people.
Some of the city's attractions include Canada's largest annual Ribfest and Sound of Music Festival, Burlington Art Centre and Spencer Smith Park, all located near the city's downtown core. Additionally, the city attracts hikers, birders and nature lovers due to the Royal Botanical Gardens located on the border with Hamilton, as well as its proximity to a part of the Niagara Escarpment in the north end of the city that includes the Iroquoian section of the Bruce Trail.
By the time land beside the bay was deeded to Joseph Brant at the turn of the nineteenth century, the name "Burlington" was already in common use. With the completion of the local survey after the War of 1812, the land was opened for settlement. Early farmers prospered in the Burlington area because of the fertile soil and moderate temperatures. Produce from the farms was shipped out via the bustling docks of the lakeside villages of Port Nelson and Wellington Square, as well as Brown's Wharf in the nearby village of Port Flamborough (which was to become Aldershot).
In 1874, Wellington Square and Port Nelson were incorporated into the Village of Burlington. However, the arrival of large steamships on the Great Lakes made the small docks of the local ports obsolete, and the increased use of railway is to ship goods marked the end of the commercial wharves.
Burlington was incorporated into a town.
Following the Second World War better transportation access due to the new (1939) Queen Elizabeth Way (QEW) encouraged both light industry and families to move to Burlington. The population skyrocketed as new homes were built, encouraging developers to build even more new homes. In 1962, Burlington annexed most of the Township of Nelson, as well as Aldershot, formerly a part of East Flamborough Township.
By 1974, with a population exceeding 100,000, Burlington was incorporated as a city. Today's population has topped 175,000.