Calgary’s growth is immense, even in uncertain economic times, and with so many moving to the city, we’d like to help ease the transition. Here’s everything you need to know about living in this city, laid out in a two part series. From the basics, to jobs, to culture, we’ll highlight haunts and hotspots in #YYC.
Calgary, the largest city in Alberta, is located east of the Rocky Mountains, and surrounds two major rivers, the Bow and Elbow. The city is divided into four quadrants (SE, SW, NE, NW), and the layout comprises generally a grid format. Tip: Home hunting? Make sure to double check the quadrant on the addresses of Calgary real estate listings, as some streets repeat.
Because the city’s western boundaries are so close to the foothills and mountains, Calgary is popular choice for the outdoorsy. Hiking, skiing, and boating are just minutes away, and the tall snowy peaks are a daily reminder of the possibilities. It’s the ideal crossroads between big city culture and rural escapes.
When it comes to choosing an area, most residents will pick a home based on the neighbourhood. That being said, the entire quadrant usually plays a small role. For instance, SW Calgary homes are a relatively short commute to the downtown core, compared to the communities in the SE.
What’s particularly interesting is Calgary’s new trend of mixed-use developments. YYC isn’t as walkable as other major Canadian cities, so these areas aim to increase the walking lifestyle, providing both homes and employment within a stone’s throw from each other. With extending transit lines, it’s becoming even easier to commute or visit other areas without a car.
If you’re new to the province, you’ll be welcomed by a few perks, namely taxes. There’s no provincial sales tax and the tax rates are at a standard 10% of your income. Alberta also has a world-class health care system, covering many benefits and omitting a monthly fee.
Next time on the moving series, we’ll focus on some of our favourite communities, and dive into the local culture scene.
Krista Kehoe, Calgary real estate agent & REALTOR®