Vancouver Magazine has created a data-driven ranking of the best and worst neighbourhoods to live in the city, a list destined to settle, or start, quite a few arguments.
Of all the stats collected, the highest weighted factors were affordability, good for raising kids, and proximity to good restaurants and coffee shops.
Ranking system bound to spark conversation
Editor-in-chief of Vancouver Magazine Max Fawcett says the list was created not just to show the facts, but to open up a discussion about what matters to people living in Vancouver.
You can certainly argue with how we’ve weighted the various factors, you know, affordability, commute times, restaurants, those are open to discussion. But in terms of the actual data that underpins it all, it’s kind of beyond reproach. So it’s an interesting, I think, approach to how we talk about neighbourhoods in the city.
And the winner is…
Coming out on top is False Creek, which Fawcett says has a great mix of the best parts of city living.
It’s affordable, it’s got good schools, it’s close to restaurants, the commute time is almost nill for anyone who’s working in the downtown core, it has green space, it has a little bit of everything. It’s sort of that ‘goldilocks neighbourhood’ where it’s right in that sweet spot.
Downtown deemed affordable in comparison to other areas
Following the #1 spot are the West End, Lynn Valley, Main St., and one that Fawcett says might come as a surprise by being ranked so high – Downtown.
I think it reflects that downtown is becoming an increasingly livable and interesting place to live. You know, you have more amenities now, certainly it did very well on restaurants and night life and things like that, but it’s a neighbourhood that’s coming into its own I would say and probably will continue to attract people just in terms of the relative cost of housing there. You know it’s kind of funny to think of downtown as being affordable, but by all metrics it is affordable and it has the advantage of being able to walk to work and being able to walk to all sorts of amazing things.
Walkability proves to be very important
Areas like Shaughnessy, Kerrisdale and Dunbar scored near the bottom of the list, which Fawcett attributes not only to their high prices, but that the neighbourhoods lack an urban feel.
I think if someone wanted to accuse our list of having a bias it would be that we have a bias towards sort of urbanity and proximity to ammenities and walkability and things like that. And that’s just not something that Dunbar has been able to… it’s not been a calling card for Dunbar and Kerrisdale.