Courtenay's Downtown on 5th Street (Taken by Jon Gauthier, Vista Radio staff)
It’s all eyes on Vancouver Island.
Locals enjoy oceanfront views, while surrounded by mountains and forests. Now it seems people living in other areas want the islander lifestyle, too.
A handful of communities islandwide ranked well in a new ‘Livability Report,’ with its findings stemming from a Leger survey conducted on behalf of RATESDOTCA.
The Canadian insurance company says, due to the ongoing pandemic, many Canadians are considering moving from larger metro areas, to smaller cities and towns.
“That possibility is precisely what inspired this report, which had one simple mission: to identify Canada’s best places to live outside of big metro areas — for folks who can live and work anywhere in the country.”
Two months of research lead to a ranked list of more than 150 communities, with points given for positives like a growing population, low mortgage costs, and scenic beauty.
Canada-wide, Vancouver Island’s own Langford took the top spot, followed by Cowichan Bay in 7th.
Courtenay wasn’t far behind, coming in 11th; Duncan in 13th, Victoria in 30th, Campbell River in 37th, Nanaimo in 54th, and Port Alberni in 82nd. Powell River also made the list, ranking 93rd.
“We call it the Livability Report because not only does it factor in traditional metrics like affordability and growth, but it also gives weight to lifestyle-oriented criteria like scenery, nightlife, outdoor activities and accessibility,” RATESDOTCA says.
In fact, survey results revealed that one of the top deciding factors when looking for where to move is scenery, followed by affordability. Other top factors included economic and job growth, size of city/town, and outdoor activities.
The results come as no surprise to Campbell River’s Mayor Andy Adams.
He says the city’s been featured in a number of national publications over the years, “that have profiled Campbell River as just a wonderful mid-sized community, with a lot of natural amenities.”
“I think we’re seeing results of that exposure with the amount of development permits and building that’s going on,” Adams adds. “I think the secret’s out.”