Who's Your City?, by Richard Florida
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What’s Edmonton Like?


I am headed to Colorado for law school and have the option of pursuing a dual-degree program with the University of Alberta in Edmonton. This would mean two years in Boulder and two in Edmonton, as opposed to the typical three in Boulder.

Does anyone have any information concerning the transportation infrastructure, quality of life, etc. of Edmonton? What about the U of A? I’m okay with cold, as I’m originally from upstate NY. I would prefer not to have to own a car.

Sent by Zach from Edmonton, Alberta

6 Responses to “What’s Edmonton Like?”

  1. Dan Says:

    I was born in Edmonton and still have family there. It’s a very sprawled-out city. More so than any other in Canada. It has a lot of things going for it but there is no good way to live there without a car.

  2. Bob Says:

    Check out imagesedmonton.com

  3. Matt Dance Says:

    I am currently a grad student at the UofA. While Edmonton is quite sprawlly, if you live in the core near the University, you do not need a car. I know this because I have lived in Edmonton for over 10 years not owning a car, cycling and taking public transit. Choose where you live wisely, though!

  4. Lindsay Says:

    It’s basically June and it’s snowing in Edmonton. Snow and cold are pretty standard here, aside from the 2 weeks of summer. There are better cities in Canada, i’m just saying.

  5. Andrew F Says:

    It’s Canada’s most northern city and very sprawling as already mentioned. It has the largest Ukranian/Slavic population in Canada as a majority of Slavic immigrants that came to Canada migrated west to the Canadian Praries before and after the wars. The town of Alberta, has a lot of government services, and yes it has a very strong university, the University of Alberta which I believe is very strong in Bio sciences. I don’t know about law, you’d be better off down east in Toronto for law. Its has long winters averaging as high as 8 months but a very nice summer as well. Very strong artsy community and their NHL hockey team was home for Wayne Gretzky. More so blue collar in terms of non-govt work as opposed to Calgary being white collar and home to a lot of head offices for the oil industry. Other than that, people are diplomatically friendly.

  6. Omar Says:

    Edmonton is an exciting time to live right now because of a rejuvenated enthusiasm for downtown and urban design. Yes, it’s sprawled; yes, the architecture isn’t great; yes, winters are long (though not much longer than most Canadian cities). But it’s transforming rapidly. Downtown’s population has doubled in a decade; parking lots and infills are now cranes and scaffolding; independent restaurants are popping up everywhere and sometimes to national acclaim. The “mall” still dominates, but not as strongly as it once did.

    But the best thing of all is the one thing that never changes: the river valley. She is the green ribbon that allows Edmontonians to have both worlds, the concrete and the jungle, the social and the natural. You can bike trails for 15 kilometres, amongst a river and trees, then go up a hill and stop at a cafe to meet with friends. Where else can you have such balance?

    Choose your neighbourhood wisely, and you will have a rich life.

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