During the year 1993, London became among the largest urban municipalities within Ontario because of the 1993 annexations. Rapid commercial and residential development even took place in the northwestern and southwestern areas of the city. Now, London City is considered as the 11th largest urban area in Canada and the 6th largest city in Ontario.
The city has a long history of in the creative arts, helping to produce numerous good Canadian talents in the visual and performing arts. Among the artist and actors include: dancer Evelyn Hart, Jack Chambers and the late Greg Curnoe, actor Ryan Gosling, musician Guy Lombardo, and Oscar-winning screenplay writer and director Paul Haggis. London Arts Council is devoted to enhancing creative vitality and quality of life through its good services and programs which provide informational, educational, and networking opportunities to Londoners, visitors, and the Arts community. Museum London provides various collections of regional Canadian works and over 25,000 artifacts which reflect London's artifacts. Orchestra London provides inspirational and distinctive classical music performances and different orchestrated music. The Mabile Choirs of London and the London Youth Symphony are also well-known within the city. There are two prominent art houses at London, one is the Open House Arts Collective, that promotes cultural activities in the city and the McIntosh gallery, an art gallery on the UWO Campus. The London Public Library has author readings and art exhibitions, and the Writers Resource Center is the place of the Canadian Poetry Association (London Chapter).
London city is home to several festivals, including the Taste of London Festival, London International Hot Air Balloon Festival, London Ribfest (second biggest rib festival within North America), the Expressions in Chalk Street Painting Festival, Home County Folk Festival, Pride London Festival (one of the biggest Pride festivals within Ontario), Sunfest (a World Music Festival and the second biggest within Canada), London Fringe Theatre Festival, and the London Ontario Live Arts Festival.
London has a financial system which is dominated by military vehicle, information technology, insurance and locomotive trades. London city is the birthplace of London Life Insurance Company and General Motors' Electro-Motive Division. General Dynamics Land Systems makes armoured personal carriers in the city. London has a strong life sciences and biotechnology related research; and much of this is spurred by the University of Western Ontario. The university brings in approximately C$1.5 billion to the London economy each year. 3M's headquarters are also situated within the city of London, and Carling Breweries and Labatt are established here. Kellogg's Company likewise has a plant in the city of London, and is considered to have the most technologically-advanced manufacturing facilities within the company.