Time for a change...
Changing with the times...
Let me give my 2 cents...
Okay, I think it's out of my system!
Most of us either have 'too much change' or we never carry any on us, and instead put everything on our debit or credit cards. However the coins are important for currency and the 'dollar coin' has been around way before the 'loonie' was even produced. The need to save money, isn't this what we are all after, was why the coin was implemented in the first place, since a coin would last for decades and cost less than the paper bank note that would only last a few years.
The 'loonie', a coined term (last coin pun, promise) was created on June 30th, 1987 to replace the one dollar banknote, but also due to vending machine operators, companies, and transit companies because the price of parking meters were going to go up in price and a paper bank note cannot keep up with the times.
The dollar coin has been around since 1935, and was created for King George V's 25 years of king. The silver coin became more as a collectable, due to the high silver content, and were large and heavy in weight. These dollar coins are considered still rare as not many were made.
And Now Back to the Loonie: The original colour was to be silver and the design was originally 'the voyageur', which was used before. However the dyes were 'lost' in transit, which the RCMP became involved, and to this day do not know what happened (whether they were lost or stolen). So to avoid the circulation of possible counterfeit silver coins, the colour was changed to gold and the image was changed to the loon.
The 11 edged sized coin is the same as the U.S. in order for it to be interchanged in their system.
As for the nickname 'the loonie' stuck based on the image of the loon and helped with the nickname of the 'toonie' to keep with the theme. So to recap, the dollar coin has been around since the 30's and the image and colour changed in the late 80's, but the name we coined, we know and love.
Facts taken from RCI (Radio Canada International)