I know this blog has been pretty inactive for a while now, but I don't want to close it off just yet. I was recently elected to Yellowknife City Council, which means I'm now in the thick of things when it comes to the topics that this blog has explored since I created it. So although I may not post frequently, my posts should be very informative.
In particular, I'm hoping to post about the following topics as soon as I get up to speed on the City's position and direction:
A Business Improvement District for Downtown
Yellowknife Tourism Development
Events and Festivals
So make sure you check back every now and then. It should be interesting.
Also, just a quick word on the Long John Jamboree. The dates are set for 2013, March 14-17. We had our AGM on Saturday and we're poised to make some great improvements on last year's inaugural event. But in order to turn the Jamboree in our City's premier tourism event, we need volunteers, and we need to build partnerships with other local organizations. So please, if you're interested in getting involved, get ahold of our executive director Nancy MacNeill through our website or facebook page.
This is a re-post from my new Yellowknife Real Estate Blog (for my new enterprise as a Century 21 agent). I promise I won't take over Above All, Yellowknife for commercial purposes, but this post seemed like it might interest AAY readers.
As most Yellowknife renters know, the apartment vacancy rate in our city tends to be very low. In the spring of 2011 it dipped as low as 0.7%. It real terms this meant that of the 2,119 rental apartments and town houses in Yellowknife, only 14 were vacant at the time of the spring 2011 survey by the Canada Housing and Mortgage Corporation (CMHC). For aspiring renters this meant fierce competition for the few vacant spaces. It also meant rents were likely to keep rising.
After many years of encouraging people to move to Yellowknife, I've decided to make a business of it! Century 21 is the most recognized consumer brand name in the real estate industry worldwide. We can market your property from coast to coast using powerful tools like the Multi Listing Service (Canadian Real Estate Association) and the Century 21 nationwide referral network. And if you're looking to buy in Yellowknife, I can help you avoid costly mistakes and find the home that is right for you.
My partner just sent me a link to a ranking of 180 Canadian cities by Money Sense - Canada's Personal Finance Website. The ranking is entitled Best Places to Live, but it is pretty narrowly focused on economic considerations. Anyway, I threw together a comparison of Yellowknife, Whitehorse, and Toronto. The 2010 ranking didn't use exactly the same categories, but where they did I have provided last year's stats in brackets.
Thanks for the link, Allison.
New Cars on Road
Access to Health Care
Low Crime Rate
Walk/Bike to Work
It's interesting to note that we rank ahead of Whithorse in terms of weather. Sunshine must be heavily weighted. Amazingly, we are in the bottom half of the ranking in terms of population growth. I bet that will surprise people.
Here is a link to their methodology. It appears that the "job prospects" category was based purely on the rate of unemployment. Still, it seems strange that we should rank so low on that one.
Check....this....out! I had no idea the Petersons had started a local tour company! Beginning in May 2011 they'll be offering daily tours of Yellowknife and guided hikes out to Cameron Falls. This is so cool! The Petersons are veterans of the tourism industry - they've owned Peterson's Point Lake Lodge since 1984. The fact that they are expanding into local tours is great news for Yellowknife. Judging by the wide range of expertise they've assembled on their team of tour guides, they'll likely be adding new kinds of tours once they're up and running.
Anyone in Yellowknife who knows the Petersons, and the people on their team, will tell you that this company is going to raise the bar BIG TIME for Yellowknife tourism product.
If you are planning a trip to Yellowknife this summer, I implore you, get in touch with My Backyard Tours.
P.S. I wrote this before fully exploring their website (I was rather excited). It looks like they'll be offering custom eco-tours - photography, flora & fauna, geology? - up to their lodge on the tundra right from the get-go. Awesome.
If you're planning to drive up to Yellowknife this summer - which you really should do - be sure to stop in at Alexandra and Louise Falls (together they are referred to as Twin Falls Territorial Park). The views are spectacular, especially on a sunny day.
All right, I'm taking a new approach to today's blog post. I know this is a topic that people have pretty strong feelings about, so I'm going to see if I can get a conversation started by presenting the following table from Demographia's recent report on housing affordability in Canada, the US, the UK, Australia, New Zealand and Hong Kong:
Yellowknife is the capital of Canada's Northwest Territories (NWT). It is located on the north shore of Great Slave Lake, approximately 400 km (250 mi) south of the Arctic Circle, on the west side of Yellowknife Bay near the outlet of the Yellowknife River. Yellowknife and its surrounding water bodies were named after the local Yellowknives Dene First Nation, who made tools from regional copper deposits. The current population is ethnically mixed. Of the eleven official languages of the Northwest Territories, five are spoken in significant numbers in Yellowknife: Dene Suline, Dogrib, South and North Slavey, English, and French. In the Dogrib language, the city is known as Somba K'e ("where the money is"). 
This website brings together a whole bunch of useful stats about Yellowknife, and other Canadian cities. Categories include demographics, households and income, education, employment, etc. It is about a trillion times easier to navigate than Statscan. Thanks to Allison for forwarding this link.