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About Utica

61,822 in city
293,280 in metro
42 km² (16 mi²)
138.990490124 m
Utica is an industrial and distribution center and the seat of Oneida County. It is located in central New York, about 90 miles (145 km) west of Albany and 56 miles (94 km) east of Syracuse. It lies at the head of the Mohawk Valley on the Mohawk River and the New York State Barge Canal, at the only water-level pass through the Appalachian Mountains. Utica grew up around Old Fort Schuyler, established here in 1756 by Colonel Peter Schuyler. It was incorporated as a village in 1798 and named after the ancient North African city of Utica. Growth was rapid, especially after the opening of the Erie Canal in 1825. Incorporation as a city came in 1832. By the 1840s, the textile industry dominated the local economy, which it continued to do for a century. As the textile industry declined around World War II, Utica's industrial base shifted to the production of machinery, electronic equipment, and food processing. Decline continued throughout the 20th Century, however, reflected in a loss of population from about 100,000 in 1960 to about 60,000 today. Downtown is anchored by the axis of Genesee Street. Urban renewal in the 1960s and 1970s brought some additions to the skyline, but many historic structures were lost in this period.