Calgary

Old Mar 26th 2014, 5:45 pm
  #16  
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Default Re: Calgary

Originally Posted by Wagaress View Post
I read the paper everyday and most of the bad things that they report on happen in Dover, Forest Lawn, Temple etc.
I don't know what paper you're reading but the CPS crime statistics don't support what you're saying. Which is why I linked to them.

I had a friend who lived in Erin Woods and she was always saying the same sort of thing, but yet she couldn't provide any examples of how it actually was crap other than some story about one of her neighbours having a burglary. Wow.

Calgary is a pretty small place so the burglars seem to target the wealthier areas, at least that's what the statistics indicate.

There's a reason that houses are so much cheaper in the NE.
Yeah, it's near the airport and doesn't have a view of the mountains. It's a mundane area, it's not a crap area.

There are some crap areas near downtown that are technically NE but you can say the same thing about the SE.
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Old Mar 26th 2014, 6:53 pm
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Default Re: Calgary

Calgary always struck me as the rat race of Western Canada. People move there for work, not for leisure or lifestyle. The Rockies are nearby, sure, but coming from London, you're going to be in for a huge culture shock. For lifestyle cities, consider Victoria, Vancouver, or Montreal.
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Old Mar 26th 2014, 7:26 pm
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Default Re: Calgary

Originally Posted by TanieBird View Post
One day I will move somewhere where there isn't snow on the ground in March. I don't know when that day will be, I am quite confident in saying Calgary isn't my forever home. Where I will end up next is anyone's guess.......
I feel the same way sometimes, it's just I've moved from country to country so many times I'm buggered if I'm doing it again, well anything that involves the use of a ship anyway. Having been around Canada a fair bit now and having lived in the GTA briefly I don't see moving anywhere else in Canada would be an improvement.

So it's easy to say, ah, I'd like to live somewhere else eventually but I never have a good answer to, where, exactly.

Yes people are boring and it is a bit mundane but then I think back to the fact that was one of the reasons why I moved here, less stress. And then got a job that stressed me out completely. Only have to sit on I-5 or the 401 for a couple of minutes to wish I was home in Calgary though.

As soon as I think about moving all the crap out of my house into a container, I'm like, er.... no.

If there was some perfect place where people were always happy, then every bugger would move there and it would be a shithole. Which is why I'm an atheist.
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Old Mar 26th 2014, 7:28 pm
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Default Re: Calgary

Originally Posted by Lychee View Post
Calgary always struck me as the rat race of Western Canada. People move there for work, not for leisure or lifestyle. The Rockies are nearby, sure, but coming from London, you're going to be in for a huge culture shock. For lifestyle cities, consider Victoria, Vancouver, or Montreal.
It has improved over the last few years. All the recent immigrants have livened it up a bit. But it's not London. Or Toronto for that matter.
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Old Mar 26th 2014, 7:30 pm
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Default Re: Calgary

Wouldn't it depend on you career? My husband works 35 hours a week and I work 25 hours a week with plenty of vacation time. Not really a rat race.

What is a lifestyle city? Again wouldn't it depend on what lifestyle you want?
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Old Mar 26th 2014, 7:48 pm
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Default Re: Calgary

A "lifestyle" city is some de rigeur place with leafy trees where you get to lounge about on park benches reading your copy of War and Peace with a warm gentle breeze blowing.

I assume.

I often hear that Calgary is boring and dull. Well, boring and dull has its upsides too.

One thing I will say, once when on vacation I ran into a couple from Fort Saskatchewan and got chatting to them, which was a major undertaking, and I was like, no, it's not my imagination, Albertans are very reserved and stand-offish. In Alberta it can be hard to tell but taken out of their natural environment it's very obvious.

I would say to someone living outside Alberta try watching some of the TV shows that Tricia Helfer or Erica Durance have been in, because they're both from Alberta. Although they're actors and do their best, quite often I see them being quite reserved in whatever scene they're in and forcing out a smile or whatever.

The long winters kill social skills imv.
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Old Mar 26th 2014, 8:18 pm
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Default Re: Calgary

Originally Posted by Steve_ View Post
I feel the same way sometimes, it's just I've moved from country to country so many times I'm buggered if I'm doing it again, well anything that involves the use of a ship anyway. Having been around Canada a fair bit now and having lived in the GTA briefly I don't see moving anywhere else in Canada would be an improvement.

So it's easy to say, ah, I'd like to live somewhere else eventually but I never have a good answer to, where, exactly.

Yes people are boring and it is a bit mundane but then I think back to the fact that was one of the reasons why I moved here, less stress. And then got a job that stressed me out completely. Only have to sit on I-5 or the 401 for a couple of minutes to wish I was home in Calgary though.

As soon as I think about moving all the crap out of my house into a container, I'm like, er.... no.

If there was some perfect place where people were always happy, then every bugger would move there and it would be a shithole. Which is why I'm an atheist.
The idea is shipping everything home is stressing me out right now so I can see why you wouldn't want to do it again if you've already been there and done that a few times.
Fellow atheist here! I didn't realize how much more religious people were here than in the UK until I moved here, that was probably an immaturity thing as I was quite young when I first moved here so I didn't even think about it. I'm surrounded by Jehovah's and Mormons where I live :/ always knocking on my bleedin door.
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Old Mar 27th 2014, 1:22 am
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Default Re: Calgary

If I were you I would come for a visit first and try to get yourself in a work mode mentality. Try to think of what it'll look like living here, not just being on a recce.
You mention getting away from the rat race in London. To be honest, that won't change coming to Alberta. I would say people here are equally, if not more so caught up in that world.
If you decide to come and live here, I suggest you do not buy a house in the current market. Alberta (like most of Canada) is at it's peak in terms of house prices imho. Also, renting will give you greater flexibility.

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Old Mar 27th 2014, 11:26 pm
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Default Re: Calgary

Originally Posted by cheeky_monkey View Post
You may have worked in some crap places..so have i and i also lived in New Cross SE London and it doesnt really get much crapper than that...at least it was an entertaining kind of crapness...Calgary just bores the shit out of you and has to be one of the least humourous places i have lived...be warned!
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Old Apr 7th 2014, 4:23 am
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Default Re: Calgary

Re: living in the NE.

In brief, if you are a racist don't move to the NE.

Lots of immigrants and ethnic communities in the NE. Crime is nothing really serious in Calgary. Some old communities in the NE are run down but also they are building a lot in the quadrant. The crime excuse is simply a code to tell newcomers the NE is the place where most immigrants live in Calgary. i.e according to some people, crime= immigrants or minorities. Anyways, after a few years in this city I know the idiots are equally distributed in every race.
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Old Apr 7th 2014, 6:57 pm
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Default Re: Calgary

Originally Posted by Nelju View Post
In brief, if you are a racist don't move to the NE.
This is sort of like Scottsdale in Arizona, people say it's the "nicest" place in the Phoenix area, what they really mean is that it is the "whitest" place. It's nothing special imx.

Anyway the ethnic thing always bemuses me because white people are immigrants too and in Calgary there are a lot of First Nations.
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Old Apr 9th 2014, 6:05 pm
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Default Re: Calgary

Originally Posted by k111 View Post
Hi there,


I'm after some info regarding life & work in Calgary...My boyfriend & I consider relocating from London to Alberta as he has excellent work opportunities over there. I've been currently researching travel sector which is my field as well as if the quality of life in Alberta/Calgary is better indeed to compare with UK.
The move has been motivated hugely by a desire to escape the rat race and have more of a balanced life style and consequently bring up a family in more peaceful environment. Having read couple of threads on Calgary (both positive/negative) I'm keen to find out more...

-how is Calgary to compare with London in terms of work/life balance? i.e. long hours, constant lack of time, or perhaps it offers a balanced life style?
-how is the interaction between people within local communities? Looking at the 'google maps' all neighbourhoods seem to be extremely residential with no distinctive town centres, the way we know in the UK i.e. local cafes, patisserie, restaurants...?
-what are the negatives about Calgary.. apart from obvious cold, distance and lack of European feel?
-if we decide to leave we would like to buy a property there. How long does it normally take to settle for a mortgage in terms of building a credit history, etc.? We've heard that you can get more for your money?

Thank for your help.


Moved from London to Calgary in 2008. No looking back - the single best decision of my life. I miss the nightlife and options, but my quality of life is an order of magnitude above where it was before.

To answer some of your questions:

1) Better work life balance in Calgary, although obviously limited nightlife. Depends what you do, or plan to do, in the "life" part of that work/life equation. Canadians (or at least, Albertans) get to work earlier than brits. That's usually offset with an earlier leaving time (I get to work at 7:30, and leave around 3:30 - I work in IT). That means time in the evenings to go fly fishing, cycling, drinking, shopping, etc. Also much more casual here. Office work here is "business casual" which means a collared shirt and slacks.

2) It's not as good as London. As you notice, very suburban. However, if you choose not to live on the suburban peripheries of the city there are some ok options. Beltline, Inglewood, Kensington, Hillhurst, Sunnyside, Bridgeland are all mature established inner city neighbourhoods with community interaction. You will however not have a giant house with a huge yard. Tradeoffs.

3) Car orientated city. You can't really do much without one. It encroaches on everything. Living without one here would be really tought (I did it for the first 6 months - total pain in the arse). Also and related, city sprawl. The friends you make will likely live all over the city. We have some friends that are an hours drive away from us in the same city. "That's like London" you might say... yes, except there's no real tube/transit system here that connects everything together like the tube.

4) Houses here make the houses in England look like hovels from the favelas of Brazil. There's no comparison. I would describe our new home but I'd be accused of bragging. As for waiting for credit, I can't answer that directly. I rented for several years until I got my PR figured out, then bought a house. By that point I had exceptional credit.

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Old Apr 9th 2014, 7:23 pm
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Default Re: Calgary

There are so many factors to consider and so much is dependent on what lifestyle matters to you.

I lived in Calgary for 15 years - then was in SE London for 8 and now have just moved to Ottawa.

We chose Ottawa b/c Calgary had my history and it was a nice to be on even pegging with my brit husband who'll know no-one. BUT we wanted the smaller city feel. After all, if we wanted Big City Life then we would've stayed in London tbh.

I can't speak for the work culture anymore as I've been away so long, and never owned a house there - but I can comment on some of the differences you will find. Canadian work culture as a whole seems to be more relaxed than London, and its certainly got a more casual feel to it. I find it refreshing tbh - people are less up their own butts but still have a strong work ethic, there seems to be a greater sense of work/life balance - and I agree with the starting earlier but finishing earlier comment. I work 8-4.

Crime. Let's face it - anything compared to London feels safe. I used to feel like I was taking my life into my hands when I visited my best mate in Forest Lawn (NE quadrant and considered the "bad area") ... after I moved to London I came back to visit and I actually had to fight the urge to laugh at the "toughies" that used to make me nervous ... they wouldn't last a minute in London. So, forget that. Every city has its areas of lower demographics, etc - better that you find an area that appeals to you and is near the amenities you want. Calgary will feel safe lol.

Arts / Entertainment. This depends on what you like. There's no way the same music, clubbing, theatre, arts etc scene as in London (the closest would be Toronto imo). BUT there IS still a thriving scene, especially theatre.

Transport. Car. Yes. Definitely. Commuting to work, if downtown is do-able by transit but don't expect London standards and accessibility. Expect slooooow. But for everything else you'll want a car.

Neighbourhoods are way different to London. There's no real little hubs of high streets. Outside of the downtown core (which is like Canary Wharf) you start to get the residential neighbourhoods which are pretty much all housing with the odd strip mall (like little retail parks), and then you get the bigger malls as hubs, or outdoor malls - hence needing a car to get to your amenities. If you wanted something that wasn't quite a culture shock then I'd aim to be around areas mentioned before like Inglewood, Ramsay, Bankview, Mount Royal, Kensington ... they're like the zone2 of "downtown" so older and less cookie-cutter suburban.

Definitely a family friendly city. Lots of stuff for the kids and if we hadn't discovered Ottawa we would've ended up back there - and who knows we may head back West in due course anyway. You're less than a 2hr drive to the mountains which are gorgeous - Rockies over Alps ANY day (and I'm not a nature freak by any means - they're just gorgeous).

Good luck! And if you're unsure then really try and take a trip to visit the city so you can rent a car and drive around and see the different feel of all the neighbourhoods.
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Old Apr 10th 2014, 11:21 pm
  #29  
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Default Re: Calgary

Originally Posted by Photoplex View Post
4) Houses here make the houses in England look like hovels from the favelas of Brazil. There's no comparison.
Really, you think that? I mean certainly they're larger but the build quality isn't usually that spectacular. Having worked in construction there's things they do here they'd never get away with in the UK.

I can never get over how poor the insulation is in many homes, if there's one place you need it, it would be here.
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Old Apr 11th 2014, 12:41 am
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Default Re: Calgary

Originally Posted by Steve_ View Post
Really, you think that? I mean certainly they're larger but the build quality isn't usually that spectacular. Having worked in construction there's things they do here they'd never get away with in the UK.

I can never get over how poor the insulation is in many homes, if there's one place you need it, it would be here.
I was thinking more of the luxuries and amenities. Granite, hardwood, stainless steel appliances (hell, dishwashers are a rarity in England), ensuites, walk-in wardrobes, in-floor heating, 9ft ceilings, finished basements (hell, basements at all), hot tubs, etc.

As for construction, can't really comment. My home back in England was over 100 years old. We just bought a brand new infill in a mature neighbourhood here. No complaints 18 months in!
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