Kanata is one of the largest suburbs of Ottawa. Located about 22 km (14 mi) west-southwest of the city’s Downtown, Kanata has a population of 101,760 as of 2011 and is growing rapidly. Before it was amalgamated into Ottawa in 2001, it was one of the fastest growing cities in Canada and the fastest growing community in Eastern Ontario. Located just to the west of the National Capital Commission Greenbelt, it is one of the largest of several communities that surround central Ottawa. It is a planned community and an important hi-tech centre.
Situated in the Ottawa Valley, Kanata is located about 22 km (14 mi) west-southwest of Downtown Ottawa along Highway 417 with an area of 139 km2 (54 sq mi). Its northern end is just to the west of the Ottawa River.
To the east, Kanata is separated from the former City of Nepean by the National Capital Commission’s Greenbelt. The community of Bells Corners borders the inner side of the Greenbelt.
To the west of Kanata is Stittsville, Ontario. First a farming community, then a village, then part of the township of Goulbourn, Stittsville is now a large suburb which was amalgamated into the new City of Ottawa in 2001, and largely employed by the hi-tech industry.
To the south of Kanata is the former village of Richmond, Ontario, which pre-dated what is now the City of Ottawa.