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Salt Lake City, often shortened to Salt Lake or SLC, is the capital and most populous city of the U.S. state of Utah. It is the seat of Salt Lake County, the most populous county in the state. With a population of 200,133 in 2020, it is the 117th most populous city in the United States. The city is the core of the Salt Lake City metropolitan area, which had a population of 1,257,936 at the 2020 census. Salt Lake City is further situated within a larger metropolis known as the Salt Lake City–Ogden–Provo Combined Statistical Area, a corridor of contiguous urban and suburban development stretched along a 120-mile (190 km) segment of the Wasatch Front, comprising a population of 2,746,164 (as of 2021 estimates), making it the 22nd largest in the nation. It is also the central core and the larger of only two major urban areas located within the Great Basin (the other being Reno, Nevada).
Salt Lake City
|City of Salt Lake City|
"The Crossroads of the West"
|Named for||Great Salt Lake|
|• Type||Strong Mayor–council|
|• Mayor||Erin Mendenhall (D)|
|• City||110.81 sq mi (286.99 km2)|
|• Land||110.34 sq mi (285.77 km2)|
|• Water||0.47 sq mi (1.22 km2)|
|Elevation||4,265 ft (1,300 m)|
|• Rank||122nd in the United States|
1st in Utah
|• Density||1,797.52/sq mi (701.84/km2)|
|• Urban||1,178,533 (US: 41st)|
|• Urban density||3,923.0/sq mi (1,514.7/km2)|
|• Metro||1,257,936 (US: 47th)|
|• CSA||2,746,164 (US: 22nd)|
|Time zone||UTC−7 (Mountain)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC−6|
|Area codes||801, 385|
|GNIS feature ID||1454997|
|Major airport||Salt Lake City International Airport|
|Website||Salt Lake City Government|
Salt Lake City was founded on July 24, 1847, by early pioneer settlers led by Brigham Young who were seeking to escape persecution they had experienced while living farther east. The Mormon pioneers, as they would come to be known, entered a semi-arid valley and immediately began planning and building an extensive irrigation network which could feed the population and foster future growth. Salt Lake City's street grid system is based on a standard compass grid plan, with the southeast corner of Temple Square (the area containing the Salt Lake Temple in downtown Salt Lake City) serving as the origin of the Salt Lake meridian. Owing to its proximity to the Great Salt Lake, the city was originally named Great Salt Lake City. In 1868, the word "Great" was dropped from the city's name.
Immigration of international members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church), mining booms, and the construction of the first transcontinental railroad initially brought economic growth, and the city was nicknamed "The Crossroads of the West". It was traversed by the Lincoln Highway, the first transcontinental highway, in 1913. Two major cross-country freeways, I-15 and I-80, now intersect in the city. The city also has a belt route, I-215.
Salt Lake City has developed a strong tourist industry based primarily on skiing, outdoor recreation, and religious tourism. It hosted the 2002 Winter Olympics and is a candidate city for the 2030 Winter Olympics. It is known for its politically liberal culture, which stands in contrast with the rest of the state's highly conservative leanings. It is home to a significant LGBT community and hosts the annual Utah Pride Festival. It is the industrial banking center of the United States. Salt Lake City and the surrounding area are also the location of several institutions of higher education including the state's flagship research school, the University of Utah. Sustained drought in Utah has more recently strained Salt Lake City's water security and caused the Great Salt Lake level to drop to record low levels, and has impacted the local and state economy.
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