Port Hope is a municipality in Ontario, Canada, about 109 km east of Toronto and about 159 km west of Kingston. It is located on the north shore of Lake Ontario (+43° 56' 54.96", -78° 17' 36.96"), at the west end of Northumberland County, and had a 2006 census population of 16,390. Port Hope's nearest urban neighbour (7 km to the east) is the Town of Cobourg, Ontario, whose 2006 census population was 18,210, while between them and surrounding Cobourg is the Township of Hamilton whose 2006 census population was 10,972. In 2001, the original Town amalgamated with Hope Township to form the Municipality of Port Hope; prior to that the Town's census population was listed as 11,718 while the Township's was 3,877.
Relatively slow growth from 1880 to 1960 resulted in much of its original architecture not being demolished in the name of progress. Port Hope's downtown is celebrated as having the best preserved 19th century streetscape in Ontario. The town's local chapter of the Architectural Conservancy of Ontario and the Heritage Port Hope Advisory Committee are very active and advise on the restoration and preservation of architecturally or historically significant buildings. With over 270 heritage designated buildings throughout the municipality, Port Hope has a higher per capita rate of preservation than any other town or city in Canada. Downtown businesses are regulated by the municipality to maintain the town's unique character.
The Capitol Theatre is Canada's last functioning atmospheric theatre. The theatre's main auditorium is styled after an outdoor medieval courtyard where rolling clouds are projected onto the ceiling. The town spent in excess of three million dollars renovating and upgrading the theatre in 2004/2005.
Port Hope is home to various industries. Downtown Port Hope is well-known as a shopping destination for antiques and other specialty items. Port Hope is served by a Via Rail station. It has a medical centre and a walk-in clinic, and is about to have a community health centre. It has its own daily newspaper, the Port Hope Evening Guide, part of the Osprey Media chain. The town's role in elder care (in the form of adult-lifestyle-centred housing, retirement and nursing homes) may increase if it continues to grow as a retirement community, but Port Hope's Economic Development Strategic Plan aims to increase job growth at least as fast as population growth.
Port Hope currently contains some historic low-level radioactive wastes, mostly dating from the days of the Eldorado radium plant for glow-in-the-dark paint for World War II aircraft instruments; Port Hope then boasted a welcome sign calling it "The Town That Radiates Friendliness." These historic wastes are scheduled to be moved to a permanent storage site over the next few years.
Port Hope's Eldorado plant also produced some uranium used in the Manhattan Project which led to the creation of nuclear weapons, and some believe it produced the uranium used in the nuclear bombs dropped on Japan in World War II. It continues to produce uranium fuel for nuclear power plants, now under the ownership of Cameco.
Cameco and Zircatec are responsible for supplying nuclear plants with fuel that produce at least 50 percent of Ontario's electricity.
The Ganaraska River (affectionately known as "The Ganny"), is well-known to area anglers for annual salmon and trout runs, and has been responsible for many historic floods, the most recent having been in 1980.
Port Hope Transit is the local bus service provider in the town.
Low Level Radioactive Waste Management Office, Port Hope Area Initiative http://www.llrwmo.org/en/porthope/porthope.html