St. Albert, Alta., Named No. 1 Overall City in Canada on MoneySense's Best Places to Live Rankings

- Knocking Calgary into the No. 2 spot, St. Albert moves up to take the coveted top spot -
- MoneySense ranks the biggest overall 201 cities, plus the top large, medium and small cities in the country -
- Top large city: Calgary; Top mid-sized city: Burlington, Ont.; Top small city: St. Albert, Alta. -
- For full rankings, visit moneysense.ca/bestplaces or pick up latest issue of newsstands or on your iPad through Next Issue Canada -

TORONTO, March 12, 2014 /CNW/ - For the first time, St. Albert, Alta., has earned the top spot on MoneySense's annual Best Places to Live in Canada, a ranking based on hard data such as employment, housing prices, crime, weather and household income.

After holding steady as the No. 2 overall city last year, St. Albert moves up one spot to take the crown. So exactly how does a small city with 64,000 people on the fringe of Edmonton beat out every other city in Canada? Take your pick. Unemployment sits at just above four per cent, incomes are among the highest in the country, crime rates are steadily falling, and while its winters can be skin-splittingly cold, it's sunny all year round.

It's easy to think residing in a modest-sized town means giving up access to all the services and amenities, but that doesn't have to be the case. Satellite communities around major centres are evolving to deliver small-town flair with big-city conveniences. In many ways, these communities aren't just great places to live: they're Canada's best-kept secrets.

The surge of the west is becoming a prominent trend in the rankings, with nearly half of the top 20 cities residing west of Winnipeg, and Alberta standing proud at the top. With its strong economy and abundance of high-paying jobs, many Canadians are starting to discover there is more to Alberta than the oil sands.

Best Places to Live in Canada also includes a list of the Best Places to Raise Kids, Best Places for Weather, Best Places for New Immigrants and Best Places to Retire.

Among other Canadian cities: St. John's, Nfld., jumped from No. 148 last year overall to No. 37 this year. Cranbrook, B.C., dropped to No. 141 from No. 53.

Canada's Best Places to Live 2014—Top 10 out of 201 (2013)

  1. St. Albert, Alta. (2)
  2. Calgary (1)
  3. Strathcona County, Alta. (4)
  4. Ottawa (6)
  5. Burlington, Ont. (3)
  6. Boucherville, Que. (18)
  7. Oakville, Ont. (5)
  8. Edmonton (11)
  9. Regina (17)
  10. Quebec City (51)

Top small cities in Canada—Top 5 out of 140

  1. St. Albert, Alta.
  2. Strathcona County, Alta.
  3. Boucherville, Que.
  4. Lacombe, Alta.
  5. Rimouski, Que.

Top mid-sized cities in Canada—Top 5 out of 46

  1. Burlington, Ont.
  2. Oakville, Ont.
  3. Regina
  4. Kingston, Ont.
  5. Lévis, Que.

Top large cities in Canada—Top 5 out of 15

  1. Calgary
  2. Ottawa
  3. Edmonton
  4. Quebec City
  5. Winnipeg

For the full ranking, visit moneysense.ca/bestplaces, or pick up the latest issue on newsstands starting this week or on your iPad through Next Issue Canada.

MoneySense's Best Places to Live in Canada is a comprehensive data-driven snapshot of Canadian cities. The magazine looks at dozens of factors that contribute to the quality of life in 201 communities across the country, including unemployment rates, taxes, income and home prices. Beyond financial measures, the magazine also considers other key factors that contribute to community's livability, such as the weather, access to health care and crime. In total, MoneySense's Best Places to Live ranks every Canadian community with a population of 10,000 or more in 34 different categories. For full methodology visit: moneysense.ca/bestplaces.

Social Media links
Visit moneysense.ca
Like facebook.com/MoneySenseMagazine
Follow @MoneySenseMag
Follow @JonChevreau
Follow @Sarah_Efron
Follow @DaveHTO
Follow @S_Mark_Brown

About MoneySense
MoneySense, Canada's personal finance and lifestyle magazine, was named Magazine of the Year by the National Magazine Awards in 2011. Packed with smart features, practical advice and easy-to-follow financial tips on everything from home improvement to mutual funds, MoneySense attracts Canadians nationwide on the lookout for new ways to save, invest and spend. MoneySense.ca is Canada's best all-around personal finance website.

SOURCE MoneySense

For further information:


Media contact
Saphyre Haliburton, MoneySense, saphyre.haliburton@rci.rogers.com, 416-764-1719