Merritt (British Columbia)

Merritt is located in the Nicola Valley, in southern British Columbia. The town was founded Forksdale in 1893 under the name and renamed in honor of William Hamilton Merritt in Merritt III. The community has about 7,000 inhabitants. In the city is a major transportation hub, as several highways pass through the city.


Merritt was founded at the confluence of the Nicola River and the Coldwater River. Set this in southern British Columbia, in the central highlands between the Coast Mountains and the Rocky Mountains.



Before the colonization by white immigrants, the area around Merritt of Indians, the First Nations was used as a gathering place. To document their history, the Nicola Valley Museum and Archives was established.

Mid-19th century the first settlers came to the area. The late 1880s consisted of three farms under the name " The Forks " a grouping which has represented the cornerstone of the community. Due to the construction of the railway through British Columbia and of carbon finds south of The Forks has been growing interest in the community. 1893, the village was then named Forksdale, but this name could not prevail. A mining engineer and supporter of the construction of railways in the area called William Hamilton Merritt III had renamed huge impact on the place and it was in 1906, in whose honor Forksdale on the name Merritt. To April 1, 1911 Merritt became a town.


The census in 2011 showed a population of 7,113 inhabitants of the small town. The population has thereby increased since the census of 2006 at 1.6%, while the population in British Columbia grew simultaneously by 7%.


Merritt is governed by an eight- member council, whose chairman is the Mayor Susan Roline.


The city is situated at the meeting point of several highways equal. On the western edge is as important north -south connection of Highway 5 from the east comes the so-called Highway 97C ( Okanagan Connector), the Kelowna connects with Merritt and in conjunction with Highway 5 is the shortest route from Kelowna to Vancouver. The highway running through the center of Merritt and continues towards Cache Creek in a northwesterly direction continuing. A few kilometers from the city limits meets Highway 5A from Princeton on the Okanagan Connector. This highway runs to Highway 5, together with Highway 97C, then leads a short distance together with Highway 5 and then run back north as a parallel route to Highway 5 to Kamloops. West of Merritt meets Highway 8, which leads from Spences Bride in the valley of Thompson Rivers ago, on Highway 97C.