Erie is a major industrial city on the shore of Lake Erie in the northwestern corner of the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. Named for the lake and the Native American tribe that resided along its southern shore, Erie is the state's fourth-largest city with a population of 104,000. Erie's Metropolitan Area consists of 281,000 residents. The city is the seat of government for Erie County. Erie is in proximity to Cleveland, Ohio; Buffalo, New York; and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Once teeming with heavy industry, Erie's heavy manufacturing sector now consists mainly of plastics and locomotive building. Known for its lake effect snow, Erie is in the heart of the rust belt and has begun to focus on tourism as a driving force in its economy. More than four million people each year visit Presque Isle State Park, for water recreation, and a new casino named for the state park is growing in popularity. Erie is known as the Flagship City because of the presence of Oliver Hazard Perry's flagship Niagara. Erie has also been called the Gem City because of the sparkling lake. Erie is laid out in a grid surrounding Perry Square in the downtown area. The downtown buildings, none being more than 20 stories, are separated from the waterfront by the Bayfront Parkway. Erie has generally small ethnic neighborhoods including Little Italy. South of 38th Street, the grid gives way to curvilinear roads of post–1970 suburban development. Millcreek Township and Peach Street are among Erie's newer areas. Most of the cityscape includes abandoned factories, mid–rise housing, single family homes, and office buildings.

Erie's waterfront includes the Pepsi Amphitheater and surrounding parkland, which hosts numerous festivals. The Bayfront Convention Center and Hotel is on Sassafras Pier next to Dobbins Landing. The Bicentennial Tower dominates the city's skyline. On the east end of the waterfront, the Erie Maritime Museum and the city's main library host the Brig Niagara. Docks and marinas fill the freshwater shoreline in between. Erie is the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania's primary access point to Lake Erie, the Great Lakes, and the Saint Lawrence Seaway. The city emerged as a maritime center after the American Revolution, then as a railroad hub during the great American westward expansion. Erie became an important city for iron and steel manufacturing during the Industrial Revolution and thrived well into the 20th century with big industry.

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Last update: 26 Nov 2022 @ 15:00

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