Unlike many major North American urbanized areas, yet similarly to other prairie centres in Canada, Saskatoon has absorbed numerous of its neighbouring communities in its history. In the past, when the city limits reached the borders of neighbouring municipalities, such as Sutherland and Nutana, they were simply annexed into Saskatoon's jurisdiction. The vast majority of the region's inhabitants reside within the City of Saskatoon, which now has a population in excess of 250,000.
According to Canada's 2011 census, the Saskatoon CMA has surpassed a quarter of a million people and is the 17th largest metropolitan area in the country with an estimated population of 260,600. It is also the largest CMA in Saskatchewan and has a land area of 5,214 square kilometres (2,013 sq mi).