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The Research Triangle commonly referred to as simply The Triangle, is a region in the Piedmont of North Carolina, incorporating the cities of Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill. The eight-county region, officially named the Raleigh-Durham-Cary CSA, comprises two Metropolitan and one Micropolitan Statistical Area: Raleigh-Cary and Durham-Chapel Hill metropolitan area. A 2008 Census Estimate put the population at 1,690,557, and the region’s population was over 1,700,000 as of July 2009. The Fayetteville metro is sometimes included as a part of the region and has a population of 2,041,000 when added. The research universities of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, North Carolina State University, and Duke University are located in this region. The “Triangle” name was cemented in the public consciousness in the 1950s with the creation of Research Triangle Park, home to numerous high-tech companies and enterprises. Although the name is now used to refer to the geographic region, “The Triangle” originally referred to the universities, whose research facilities, and the educated workforce they provide, have historically served as a major attraction for businesses located in the region. The region should not be confused with “The Triad”, which is a North Carolina region directly west of the Triangle. Most of the Triangle is represented by, and closely associated with, the second, fourth and thirteenth congressional districts.
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