Three of Canada’s cities have made it into the top five most livable cities in the world, according to the The Economist Intelligence Unit’s ( EIU) Global Livability Survey.
Vancouver was ranked the highest of the three Canuck cities, coming in at number three. However, it was a bittersweet award as the city was actually ranked in the top spot for the last decade but was knocked out this year by Melbourne, Australia and Vienna, Austria.
Toronto came in at number four and Calgary took the number five spot for the second straight year.
To arrive at these rankings, EIU looks at five basic categories to establish the stability of a city – health care, culture and environment, education and infrastructure – and there are about 40 other indicators also used to make up the final score.
EIU is and an international think-tank and their yearly survey is used for an number of purposes. According to their website, “ The survey originated as a means of testing whether Human Resource Departments needed to assign a hardship allowance as part of expatriate relocation packages.”
However, according to Wikipedia, the survey doesn’t take affordability into account when creating the list, nor do they seem to assess job availability. Critics of the survey are saying that although these cities are lovely to visit, most of them are some of the most expensive places in the world to live and that is certainly the case with Vancouver and Toronto where the average selling price if over $600,000. When citizens of these cities are putting every penny into paying for their expensive housing , they are putting less into the commercial sector and the result is slowed employment growth.
At first, I was a bit disappointed to see that Edmonton didn’t make the Top 10 list – but as it turns out, exorbitant house prices and diminished job creation seem to go hand in hand with the higher rankings and that just doesn’t sound very livable to me. I don’t know about you, but I think I’ll just thank my lucky starts that I live right here in our non-ranking, City of Champions!
Moving to Edmonton or Calgary? Give us a call – we can help!