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Crawley is a town and local government district with borough status in West Sussex, England. It is 45 km south of Charing Cross (London), 29 km north of Brighton and Hove, and 51 km northeast of the county town of Chichester. It's last recorded population was around 99,700.
Gatwick Airport, now one of Britain's busiest international airports, opened on the edge of the town in the 1940s, encouraging commercial and industrial growth. After the Second World War, the British Government planned to move large numbers of people and jobs out of London and into new towns around South East England. The New Towns Act 1946 designated Crawley as the site of one of these.
The town comprises 13 residential neighbourhoods based around the core of the old market town, and separated by main roads and railway lines.
Economically, the town has developed into the main centre of industry and employment between London and the south coast of England. A large industrial area supports industries and services, many of which are connected with the airport, and the commercial and retail sectors continue to expand.
The M23 motorway, which was opened in 1975 connects London's orbital motorway, the M25, to the A23 at Pease Pottage, at the southern edge of Crawley's built-up area.
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The above information was obtained from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crawley