Glasgow, the Gaelic Gaelic Glaschu city, is located in central-west Scotland. Situated along both banks of the River Clyde, it is 20 miles (32 km) away from the river's mouth on the western or Atlantic coast. Glasgow is the largest city in Scotland and forms an independent municipal area that lies entirely within the historic county of Lanarkshire. The Glasgow City Hall area, the Rutherglen area in South Lanarkshire, and a small eastern part of Renfrewshire are all included in the Glasgow electoral area for the Scottish Parliament. Glasgow has been home to numerous exhibitions over the years, such as the Glasgow Garden Festival in 1988, being named the City of Architecture of the United Kingdom in 1999, European Capital of Culture in 1990, National City of Sport 1995—1999 and European Capital of Sport in 2003. In terms of regional representation, four Labour MPs, two Conservative MPs and one Green MP are elected from the Glasgow electoral region.
On older maps, Glasgow appears within the area of Lanarkshire County prior to 1975; from 1975 to 1996 it appears in the Strathclyde region; newer maps generally show Glasgow as one of the 32 municipal areas of Scotland. The city has seen tremendous growth since its days as a small rural settlement on the River Clyde. Since 2000, Glasgow has had few very cold, snowy and harsh winters, with temperatures well below freezing. The 1990s and the first decade of the 21st century saw substantial growth in the number of Glasgow based call centers. The local club, the Glasgow Tigers, competes in the SGB Championship, which is part of Great Britain's motorcycling circuit. Climatically, Glasgow has a higher temperature than other parts of the United Kingdom at the same latitude, mainly due to its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean.
With the start of the Industrial Revolution, the population and economy of Glasgow and its surrounding region rapidly expanded to become one of the world's leading centers for chemicals, textiles and engineering - particularly in shipbuilding. Merchant City is one of Glasgow's growing cultural districts and is located at King Street, Saltmarket and Trongate. It is also home to an annual Merchant City festival. England is divided into nine regions and 48 ceremonial counties - although these have only a limited role in public policy. Since the Representation of the People Act of 1918, Glasgow has increasingly supported left-wing ideas and politics at a national level. The city's development was largely driven by its founding of the University of Glasgow, but it also became a major hub for transatlantic trade with British North America and British West Indies. Glasgow's modern buildings include its Royal Concert Hall and along its banks are located the Glasgow Science Centre, The OVO Hydro and the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre.
Its Clyde auditorium was designed by Sir Norman Foster and is colloquially known as Armadillo. North Glasgow stretches from north of the city centre to Bearsden, Milngavie and Bishopbriggs in East Dunbartonshire and Clydebank in West Dunbartonshire - all prosperous suburbs.