Greater Hartford is a region located in the state of
Connecticut, centered around the state's capital of Hartford.
Hartford's role as a focal point for the American insurance industry is known nationally. The vibrant music and arts scene defines the region's culture. Greater Hartford is also home to the
Travelers Championshipgolf tournament (formerly known as the Greater Hartford Open/ Buick Championship).
This area of Connecticut is different from other parts of the state in that it is not dependent on out-of-state metropolitan areas such as
New York Cityor Boston. It is on the fairly level land of the Connecticut Rivervalley with soil less rocky than that of other areas in the state.
The region's economy is closely tied with
Springfield, Massachusetts, as Hartford and Springfield are twin cities, only 25 miles apart. The area is served by Bradley International Airport, shared with Springfield. Although contiguous to Springfield's northern border, Westover Metropolitan Airportis marketed as an alternative for Hartford-bound flyers.
The population of Greater Hartford (as defined by the
U.S. Census Bureau), exceeded 1 million in 2000, having a total population of 1,059,878 (2000 census). However, this is the slowest-growing part of Connecticut, having barely grown two percent in the 1990s.Fact|date=March 2007 The 12% growth in the first half of the 2000s illustrates this trend (2005 population estimate of 1,188,241). [ [http://www.census.gov/population/www/estimates/metropop/2005/cbsa-01-fmt.xls Annual Estimates of the Population of Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas: April 1, 2000 to July 1, 2005] "U.S. Census Bureau."]
New England City and Town Area
Metropolitan Statistical Area
thumb|right|250px|Location of Greater Hartford in Connecticut.">legend|#FF0000|Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford metropolitan statistical area legend|#FFFF00|Area of Hartford-West Hartford-Willimantic CSA not included in Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford The
United States Census Bureaualso defines the Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford, CT Metropolitan Statistical Area(MSA) based on counties as building blocks. The area contains the 57 towns of Hartford County, Tolland County, and Middlesex County. The 2005 population estimate for the MSA is 1,188,241 and is ranked as the 44th largest metropolitan area by population in the United States. While the MSA definition is consistent with national definitions of metropolitan areas, the area contains a significant portion of the Lower Connecticut River Valley, which is not commonly considered as part of Greater Hartford.Fact|date=March 2007
A region very similar to the MSA is covered by the combination of the Hartford Service Delivery Area and the Mid-Connecticut Service Delivery Area, covering 56 towns. [ [http://www.ct.gov/ecd/cwp/view.asp?a=1106&q=251000 CT Dept. of Economic and Community Development] Service Delivery Areas]
The transportation in Metropolitan Hartford is primarily run by Interstate 84 and
Interstate 91. There were several plans to expand the old highway system to be run by 7 interstates (I-91, I-84, I-284, I-291 (full beltway), I-384, I-484, I-491). The existing highway system, due to high population of suburbs and downtown jobs, becomes very heavily congested during rush hours. Other state highways include Connecticut Route 2, Connecticut Route 3, Connecticut Route 9, and Connecticut Route 15.
Public transportation, primarily bus service, is operated by CTTransit. The
Connecticut Department of Transportationis located in Newington, Connecticut. The airport is Bradley International Airport, located in Windsor Locks, approximately 10 miles from Hartford via I-91. Amtrakruns a daily shuttle between New Havenand Springfield, stopping at Berlin, Windsor, and Windsor Locks, as well as Union Station in Hartford. Commuter rail on the same line is scheduled to start in 2010, with rush-hour service centered on Hartford and a shuttle to Bradley International Airport from the Windsor Locks station.
Skybus Airlinesused Westover Metropolitan Airportas its "Hartford" base.
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