When it comes to luring new residents to the area, The Big Apple has nothing on The Big Smoke. According to census data for figures ending July 1, 2019, Toronto was the fastest growing city in Canada and the U.S. over the prior-year period, as Metropolitan Toronto grew by more than 125,000 people. Conversely, the data found that major U.S. cities like New York City, Los Angeles, and Chicago each reduced in size over the same period.
With a city as culturally diverse and alive as Toronto, it makes sense why people would be coming in droves from Vancouver and other cities throughout Canada. If you’re considering a move, here are six reasons why Toronto is the place to be.
Toronto is the economic hub of Canada
There’s no doubt that the city is the business and financial capital for all of Canada and is widely considered to be a growing economic hub in North America. In recent years, Toronto’s economy has been equal to that of entire provinces like Quebec and Alberta. In 2013, Metropolitan Toronto was responsible for $330 billion of the country’s economy. While that money stems from various industries, there is no comparison to the sheer power and strength of Toronto’s financial markets. Toronto’s Financial Centre is home to Canada’s five largest banks, three life, and health insurers that rank among the top 15 globally and $2 trillion in assets held by Canadian insurance companies. Its financial sector growth has even outpaced both London and New York City over the last decade.
It’s among the most multicultural cities in the world
Multiculturalism is part of Toronto’s DNA, and it’s something that the metro area genuinely embraces. Within Toronto, you can find Little Italy, Greektown, Koreatown, Chinatown, Little Portugal, and Little India, among other culturally rich neighbourhoods and pockets. Those neighbourhoods (and others) celebrate their heritage often with different cultural displays, food tastings, and parties throughout the year. When it comes to language, English and French are widely spoken — but walk throughout Toronto, and you’re bound to hear one of the 180-some languages and dialects spoken in the city.
There’s a neighbourhood for every personality
Looking for your next neighbourhood to be quaint and quiet? Bright and bustling? Whatever your preference, Toronto has you covered with one of the city’s many diverse neighbourhoods. Spots like the Distillery District offer dining destinations for foodies and stunning architecture that appeals to history buffs. Kensington Market is a vibrant neighbourhood with vintage shops, bakeries, and boutiques. Queen West is one of downtown Toronto’s most desirable and hip neighbourhoods with fun and eclectic restaurants and bars, along with public transit to move you around the neighbourhood. Rich with Greek culture, the Danforth is a historic neighbourhood with locally owned shops, charming side streets and one of the most heavily attended events in all of Toronto, the Taste of the Danforth Festival. And there are more than 200 others to consider.
Toronto’s nightlife is thriving
The nightlife and entertainment scene in Toronto is one of North America’s best with something fun to do around every corner. There are live music venues throughout the city, dance clubs with bottle service, bars, and pubs where you can drink locally brewed beers, hot spots with heated patios and picturesque views, etc. If there’s a problem with the Toronto nightlife, the opportunities are nearly endless, and it can be hard to narrow down your choices. Then again, that’s a good problem to have.
Plenty of pro sports
Toronto’s place in pro sports is long entrenched as its Maple Leafs were one of the National Hockey League’s Original Six clubs. The Leafs, winners of 13 Stanley Cups play in Scotiabank Arena, a multi-purpose arena in downtown’s South Core district. The stadium is also home to the National Basketball Association’s Toronto Raptors, winners of the 2019 NBA Championship. Baseball fans can head to the Rogers Centre, also located downtown and just southwest of the 147-story tall CN Tower, to watch the Toronto Blue Jays of Major League Baseball. The Toronto Argonauts are winners of 17 Grey Cup titles and play in the city’s BMO Field, an outdoor stadium at Exhibition Place that also hosts Major League Soccer’s Toronto FC.
Public transportation navigates much of the city
Because of the number of people in Metropolitan Toronto, traffic can be cumbersome. As a result, many people find themselves utilizing public transit to traverse the city. Among the many options, there are buses and streetcars, commuter rail, a ferry system between Toronto’s mainland and the islands, and the subway system. Prices to ride are reasonable and the systems are all relatively easy to navigate.