The city of Rouyn-Noranda is coextensive with a territory equivalent to a regional county municipality (TE) and census division (CD) of Quebec of the same name. Their geographical code is 86.
The city of Rouyn (named for Jean-Baptiste Rouyn, a captain in the Royal-Rousillon regiment of Montcalm) appeared after copper was discovered in 1917. Noranda (a contraction of "North Canada") was created later around the Horne mine and foundry. Both were officially constituted as cities in 1926, then merged in 1986.
The population tends to increase or decrease dramatically depending on the economic situation. The city's population dropped by 5 per cent between the 1996 and 2001 census, before increasing slightly by 0.8 per cent for the 2006 census. This more closely parallels the demographic patterns of Northern Ontario than those of Quebec during this period. Rouyn-Noranda also has other cultural affiliations with Northern Ontario, being the only municipality in Quebec that holds a membership in the Francophone Association of Municipalities of Ontario.
The Roman Catholic diocese of Rouyn-Noranda was established on November 29, 1973 with Mgr. Jean-Guy Hamelin as its first bishop. It is part of the Metropolitan Province of Gatineau. Mgr. Dorylas Moreau was appointed as bishop on November 30, 2001, replacing Mgr. Hamelin. On September 15, 2003, a decree moved the cathedral from Saint-Michel-Archange church to Saint-Joseph church.
In the municipal reorganizations of January 1, 2002, Rouyn-Noranda amalgamated with the municipalities of the former Regional County Municipality of Rouyn-Noranda, including Arntfield, Bellecombe, Cadillac, Cléricy, Cloutier, D'Alembert, Destor, Évain, Lac-Montanier, Lac-Surimau, McWatters, Mont-Brun, Montbeillard, Rapides-des-Cèdres and Rollet.
The city's mayor is Roger Caouette. His current term is 2005-2009.
Rouyn-Noranda is also a territory equivalent to a regional county municipality (TE) and census division (CD) of Quebec, coextensive with the city of Rouyn-Noranda. Its geographical code is 86.
The Rouyn-Noranda Huskies have played in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League since the Saint-Hyacinthe Laser relocated to the town in 1996. Rouyn-Noranda has produced a high amount of NHLers for its size with former NHL stars Pierre Turgeon, Sylvain Turgeon, Dale Tallon, Pit Martin, Jacques Laperriere, Jacques Cloutier, Dave Keon, Réjean Houle and Éric Desjardins all hailing from the city.
Since 1982, the city has been host to the International Cinema Festival of Abitibi-Témiscamingue and since 2003, the host of the Emerging Music Festival in Abitibi-Témiscamingue.
Rouyn-Noranda is also known as a "Capital of Metal" since the metal scene is very active and popular. Many metal bands played in Rouyn-Noranda, like Behemoth, Sonata Arctica, Kreator, Napalm Death, Cryptopsy, Cannibal Corpse, Quo Vadis, Kataklysm, 1349, Anonymus, Vader, Martyr and Neuraxis. Descend Into Nothingness, Abitabyss, Archons, Cryptik Howling, Decrepity and many other metal bands from Rouyn-Noranda have great success in the metal scene.
Almost all media in Rouyn-Noranda and the nearby city of Val-d'Or serves both cities. Although the cities are far enough apart that radio and television stations in the area serve the cities from separate transmitters, almost every broadcast station in either city has a rebroadcaster in the other city. The only nominal exceptions are the cities' separate Énergie stations, although at present even these stations share the majority of their broadcast schedule.