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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 5:40 pm
 


I would like to know which places are best to live within Canada.

Let's say for argument sake that if someone was to move, where would be the best Canadian city or region to relocate ? Canada is a vast country which has a lot of great regions.

Taking in consideration, economically speaking, jobs, real estate, the best neighbourhoods and so forth. Please describe the best places in Canada.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 5:47 pm
 


Alberta.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 6:16 pm
 


Clogeroo Clogeroo:
Alberta.
Why? I've lived there, I didn't think it was the best.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 6:20 pm
 


Well I thought it was? :P At least it is ranked the best I think in Canada. Is Prince Geroge the best?


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 6:25 pm
 


Clogeroo Clogeroo:
Well I thought it was? :P At least it is ranked the best I think in Canada. Is Prince Geroge the best?
OH NO. It's cold, it stinks like pulp and the jobs are hard to find. But it's the best for me.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 6:50 pm
 


This is a great article that might help.

http://www.canadianbusiness.com/ranking ... e=overview


Canada's best places to live
Tim Whitehead
From the April 2006 issue of MoneySense

If you play Monopoly you know that the best places to own are Boardwalk, Park Place and Pennsylvania Avenue. In real life, though, figuring out the best places to live is a far more difficult question. How do you stack up the cosmopolitan pleasures of Montreal or Toronto versus the picture-postcard charm of Chester, N.S., or the spectacular mountain scenery of Whistler, B.C.? What do you say when your father-in-law announces that he can't imagine raising kids in the place you've decided to call home, or your cousin mentions to everyone at your family reunion that his town is a lot nicer than yours?

One solution — not recommended — is to settle the matter with fists. A better plan is to impartially figure out which communities actually do have the best combination of natural advantages and economic good fortune.

That's what we set out to do. We started by pulling data for 108 communities of more than 10,000 people. We then crunched truckloads of numbers to discover the very best places to live in Canada.

In part, our goal was to satisfy our own curiosity and settle those my-place-is-better-than-your-place arguments. But we thought our research would also be of interest to a wide swath of the population, including young people looking for great communities to settle down in, real estate speculators searching for emerging hot spots, job hunters weighing offers from different parts of the country, and, most of all, millions of baby boomers, who are now verging on retirement and looking for new horizons to explore.

We began our search for Canada's best places to live by acknowledging that we could never hope to gauge the beauty of a sunset in each community or the friendliness of its people. So we focused our attention purely on what we could measure.

Weather, for example. Environment Canada provides an immense database on temperatures and climactic conditions, so it was possible for us to say with confidence that Chilliwack, B.C., typically gets more precipitation than Cape Breton, N.S., but that Cape Breton typically has more wet days than Chilliwack. We decided that the ideal community, weather-wise, would have a small number of wet days, a moderate amount of precipitation — about 900 millimetres of rain per year — and relatively few days when the temperature rose above 30° or dropped below freezing. On those criteria, Victoria came out on top with a score of 17.1 out of a possible 20 points, closely followed by Powell River, B.C., and Cobourg, Ont.

Something else we could measure, thanks to the 2001 census, was how much the people in a community walk to work — and the more walking, the better, in our opinion. Places where people stroll down the street tend to be places that are safe. They also enjoy relatively little commuting stress and a high level of easily accessible amenities. The last census asked who walked to work on a particular day and who drove a car or rode a bus. Which community came out on top for pedestrian traffic? Believe it or not, Yellowknife, where almost a quarter of workers hoof it to the office. Magog and Dolbeau-Mistassini, both in Quebec, came second and third, respectively. We awarded up to 15 points for being able to walk to work.

We scratched our heads for a while over how to treat population growth. On the one hand, there's no more sincere endorsement of a community than a growing population, because it indicates that people want to live there and are voting with their feet to do so. On the other hand, extremely high population growth can bring problems of traffic congestion, rising property taxes and so on.

After a lot of thought, we decided to give the highest marks — a total of 10 points — to communities that grew by 15% between the 1996 and the 2001 censuses, because we considered growth of that magnitude to indicate strong but manageable expansion. We awarded fewer points the further a community's growth fell from the magic 15% mark, so communities that had huge growth or no growth lost out on this score. (It may interest you to learn that just under half of the communities we considered actually lost population between 1996 and 2001.) Our system wound up tilting things in the direction of Alberta's boom towns. Calgary, Red Deer and Wood Buffalo finished one-two-three on this scale of civic success.

We wouldn't be true to the MoneySense name if we didn't include some money factors in our rating. The obvious one was income. We awarded up to 10 points to places where people earn relatively big paycheques. The three communities with the highest median household income, again according to the 2001 Census, were Yellowknife, Wood Buffalo and Kitimat, B.C. (It's true that the cost of living in some communities is higher than in others and so it would have been better if we could have adjusted these figures accordingly, but such fine-tuning will have to await the development of cost-of-living indices for each city by Statistics Canada.)

While high income is nice, low unemployment may be even better. We awarded communities with the lowest unemployment rates the highest marks out of a possible 15 points. Rather surprisingly, this measure leaned in Saskatchewan's direction: Estevan (2.2% in the 2001 Census), Lloydminster (3.7%), and Swift Current (4.1%) had the lowest unemployment rates of all the centres in our study. (Why should Saskatchewan, not generally acknowledged as an economic dynamo, be so favored? The answer is that unemployment is the difference between employment and labor force, and Saskatchewan has a slow-growing labor force. Consequently, even if job creation isn't zooming ahead in Saskatchewan, the province still boasts low unemployment rates.)

We also awarded points for economic diversity. A one-industry town is vulnerable to big economic swings, while a community with many different industries is usually more stable. The problem with this measure is that it is biased in favor of large centres: Toronto is more diversified than Corner Brook, Nfld., and always will be. Our solution was to look at relative diversity. A Statistics Canada study measured the economic diversity of communities and compared them to what would be typical for communities of their population sizes. We simply took the difference between the actual diversity and what was expected based upon the population size of the community. The most relatively diversified communities in Canada received up to 10 points. They were Brantford, Ont., Drummondville, Que., and Moncton, N.B.

We figured we had to factor house prices into our calculations. Problem is, home prices can be viewed in several ways. On the one hand, they are going to be high in places where lots of people want to live, so high home prices are usually a good indicator of a community's overall attractiveness. On the other hand, high home prices aren't good news for people looking to move into a community. In addition, house prices may be high in some areas because building space is scarce or because the local mine is hiring lots of new workers, rather than because the community is a wonderful place to live.

In the end, we decided that, if you were moving to a community — perhaps because this article convinced you to do so — you would be a buyer and prefer lower house prices to higher ones. So we awarded a maximum of 15 points to the communities with the lowest priced housing.

We got our numbers by checking the Multiple Listing Service and noting the median price for a single-family detached house listed during early January. Not surprisingly, some of the top communities in terms of our other measures had exceptionally high house prices. The median listed price for a home in Vancouver, for instance, was an eye-popping $699,900. Conversely, the bargain basement prices were to be found in communities way down the growth charts. Timmins, Ont., (median price of $55,000), Yorkton, Sask., ($59,900) and Terrace, B.C. ($69,900) may not be economic powerhouses, but they're heaven for anyone who wants to buy a cheap home.

As a final adjustment, we added up to five points for a community's special attractions, such as being home to a university, being situated on a lake or ocean front, or being close to a national or provincial park. These bonus points didn't play a large role in determining the rankings, but we thought we should at least nod in the direction of recognizing each community's unique features.

So, after all this figuring, what city topped our list? What's the absolutely best place to live in Canada? (Drum roll, please.)

It's Leamington, Ont., a city of 30,000 people on the shores of Lake Erie, just south of Windsor. If you don't know much about this tiny gem, don't worry. It is, in the words of its mayor, a well-kept secret. But this city, known mainly for its tomato-growing prowess, is now officially our choice as Canada's No. 1 place to live.

Leamington's virtues include mild weather and a low unemployment rate. Its scores for household income and population growth are in the top 25% of all communities. Its sole weakness is a relatively small percentage of people who walk to work, but its reliance on the automobile didn't prevent Leamington from claiming first place.

In No. 2 spot in our ranking was Guelph, Ont., a pleasant university town an hour west of Toronto. It scored well in a number of categories, but was dragged down by relatively expensive housing. Lloydminster, on the Saskatchewan-Alberta border, grabbed third place, but its finish was hurt by its frigid weather.

Our No. 4 community, Grande Prairie, Alta., northwest of Edmonton, scored well on all our economic indicators, but was hurt by poor marks for house prices, walking to work, and frigid weather. Just behind was Kitchener, Ont., the top-ranked metropolitan area in our survey. This community (which, by StatsCan definition, includes Waterloo and Cambridge) would have finished even higher, but was hurt by high house prices and the small number of people who walked to work. Cobourg, on the shore of Lake Ontario, a couple of hours east of Toronto, finished No. 6. It scored well for weather and was in the top half of all the other rankings, but was dragged down by relatively high house prices.

It will surprise many people to find that Hamilton, Ont, snagged seventh place on our list. While it's renowned for its blue-collar culture and steel furnaces, Hamilton is changing and has its share of higher-tech industries. Moreover, the city's weather benefits from the proximity of Lake Ontario.

Red Deer and Calgary received very similar scores and the two nearby Alberta centres finished No. 8 and 9 in our survey. They ranked high on many indicators, but high house prices and, in the case of Calgary, a relatively undiversified economy kept them from ranking higher on our list. Halifax rounds out our top 10. This Maritime beauty scored well on most criteria, but its ranking was undermined by relatively high house prices and wet weather.

Want to check out other communities? Check out our interactive chart of 108 centres across Canada. We think you'll find it fascinating to see where your own town finishes in our ratings. And, if you disagree strongly, remember that our rankings are necessarily blind to many factors. If you live for hiking and camping, for instance, chances are that you're going to think we underrate the charms of some smaller, more remote communities. On the other hand, if you're a devotee of Asian fusion cooking and love high-end clothes shopping, you're going to wonder why Canada's major cities don't rank higher. In either case, you can use the data we've posted online to drill down further and find the communities that are most likely to appeal to you.

It would be understandable for the mayors of the top 10 to celebrate wildly with the list. But before they do — and before the mayors of slighted communities write to complain — let's make it clear that this list is not the end of the line. We plan to revisit this ranking in years to come and we'd appreciate your input. Write to us with your suggestions at letters@moneysense.ca and maybe next year your community will finish No. 1.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 7:26 pm
 


anywhere except iceowls basement :wink:


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 9:22 pm
 


Ottawa. Such a nice city, lots of seasonal activities, interesting stuff, and there is always something happening in this city, you just gotta look for it. :lol:


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 9:35 pm
 


Morley Ab [drunk]


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 9:38 pm
 


Hands down.....Vancouver, BC


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 9:43 pm
 


But it's so rainy there...


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 9:44 pm
 


rain in the city....means snow on the slopes :D


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 9:45 pm
 


Arctic_Menace Arctic_Menace:
But it's so rainy there...


especially the last 2 years 8O


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 9:45 pm
 


doesn't matter, it's still rainy...


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 9:46 pm
 


TattoodGirl TattoodGirl:
rain in the city....means snow on the slopes :D


with creeks running down on top of the snow and slush


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