This morning I stumbled upon Vinny's (Success Clothing) status that got quite a reaction from the Facebook community: "It's always funny when I hear someone say 'Montreal sucks, I'm moving to Toronto, there is more money there'. There is a lot of money to be made here, maybe you're just lazy?" To my own surprise, the comments are mostly on Toronto's side... It seems that Montrealers truly believe "the 6" is a better place to be at right now. Is the grass really greener on the other side though? Let's take a look at it together.
1. Montreal has a lower cost of living than Toronto
Yes, people are, in fact, making more money in Toronto, but the cost of living is also significantly higher in the 416. If you can barely make ends meet in Montreal, what makes you think that you'll succeed in Toronto? Nonsense. The cost of real estate in Toronto is almost 100% more expensive than in Montreal, fyi.
2. Montreal is a perfect blend of Europe and America
European sophistication perfectly blends with American know how and innovation here, in Montreal. Toronto is trying so hard to be a big city like NYC, but it's still REALLY NOT quite there yet. Montreal is not trying to pretend to be anything that it's not. We have a distinct personality as a city and we're sticking to it.
3. Montreal is bilingual
So many people complain about having to speak two languages in Montreal, when it's the most beautiful thing ever. All you have to do is learn both of them and become better than other people who only speak one language. Did you know that studies show being bilingual makes you smarter and a better lover? Yeah... get your lazy ass to work.
4. Montreal has a better hockey team #sorrynotsorry
Um, hello? Our team actually won twenty four stanley cups. The last time Toronto won was 1967. Ouch!
5. Summers in Montreal are way more exciting
Montreal is so much more fun than Toronto in the summer! Just think about all the festivals we have: Just for Laughs, Jazz fest, Osheaga, Grand Prix... Montrealers are known to be more fun than Toronto people, jusk ask around. We've mastered the art of partying.
6. Montreal women are more beautiful
According to AskMen.com, Montreal is #8 in the Top 10 list of cities with the most beautiful women in the world. In the whole world, guys! Toronto did not make the cut.
7. Montreal has better parties
No one goes to Toronto to party. Everyone knows that Montreal is the place to go to have a good time. Bachelor or bachelorette parties? Montreal is where it's at!
8. Montreal is also more fun in the winter
We have our own mountains that allow for winter sports: skiing, sledding, tubbing, snowboarding... Toronto has no mountains, it's totally flat.
9. Montreal has more food!!!
Montreal has the largest concentration of restaurants per capita in North America. You won't struggle to find a cool place to grab a bite in Montreal. We love to eat... I'll go as far as saying - we're the best at it.
10. Montreal is a historic city
Montreal has been around for way longer than Toronto. As a consequence, Montreal has a more unique architectural style and a richer historical heritage, obviously. Montreal's Old port can easily be mistaken for a European neighborhood... you won't ever get that feeling in Toronto.
Montreal is certainly no stranger to a traffic jam, which makes taking public transit a more viable option to not only get around faster but do more good for the environment.
As Canadian cities take the initiative to improve their transit systems and reduce their carbon footprints, Montreal has become one of the country's greenest metropolitan areas when it comes to transport, according to one ranking.
A December report from Kijiji Autos analyzed green transport options in Canada's most populated cities, evaluating their use of electric cars, bikes, scooters, and the number of electric charging stations.
With its metro and bus systems, BIXI rentals, bike lanes, and availability of electric cars, Montreal found itself in third place among Canadian cities that offer the greenest transport with a score of 5.5/10.
Although Vancouver and Ottawa/Gatineau snagged the top two spots, Montreal takes the lead as the most bicycle-friendly city in all of North America, with a total of 2,163 bicycle paths, says the Copenhagenize Index.
Montreal's third-place ranking is encouraging news, said McGill University Assistant Professor of Geography, Grant McKenzie, who specifically boasted about Montreal's metro system, "especially compared to other Canadian cities," as well as its "substantial investment towards electric buses."
While McKenzie said "we can always do better" and bemoaned the city's ban on e-scooters, he called the popularity of the BIXI and the inclusion of electric bikes in its fleet an "excellent move in the right direction."
As for electric cars, Kijiji Autos looked at new registrations of electric vehicles in the first quarter of 2021, as well as total charging stations. Montreal landed second to Toronto with a total of 3,633 new registered electric cars, and 1,258 electric charging stations throughout the city.
Kijiji Autos also looked at the number of hybrids and electric vehicles for sale on their platform. Montreal led the way with 1,063 hybrid vehicles and 375 electric vehicles, states the report.
With the province of Quebec offering residents a rebate for the purchase or lease of electric cars, Quebec estimates that there will be 1.5 million electric vehicles on the road by 2030.
Women will lead five of Quebec's eight largest cities following the 2021 municipal elections.
The biggest headline of the night may have been Valérie Plante's triumph over old foe Denis Coderre in Montreal, but across the province, the faces of municipal politics have become more gender-balanced.
According to the latest counts and projections, France Bélisle (Gatineau), Catherine Fournier (Longueuil), Évelyne Beaudin (Sherbrooke) and Julie Dufour (Saguenay) are all also on their way to their respective (and figurative) city hall corner offices.
In Quebec City, it seemed for a while like Marie-Josée Savard would join them. Multiple outlets had even called the election for her until the vote count for her opponent surged into the evening. Bruno Marchand ultimately claimed victory.
Mayor Plante commented on the historic nature of her second mandate in her victory speech Sunday night.
"Four years ago, Montrealers elected the first woman mayor in the history of the City of Montreal," she said.
"Tonight, they told us again, 'yes, this mayor, we're going to continue to work with her, we trust her!'"
This year, for the first time, Montrealers will have two women leading the city, as Projet Montréal's Dominique Ollivier is set to take over as president of the Executive Committee.
According to a new study put out by the EasyPark Group, Montreal is among the top 20 smartest cities in the world, coming in at number 17 among cities with a metro area population of over 3 million people.
EasyPark's Smart & Sustainable Cities Index ranks cities around the world based on data that factors in "digital life, mobility innovation, business tech infrastructure, and sustainability."
With an overall ranking of 82.24 out of 100, Montreal ranked just under cities like Chicago, Tokyo, Paris, and our mortal frenemies, Toronto, which came in 12th place.
First up, in the "digital life" category, Montreal got scores above 80 for "citizen adoption" and "health care innovation." Where we lagged behind was in the "government adoption" and "tech education" subcategories.
Next, in "mobility innovation," our city got big scores for "traffic management" and for our "clean transport" infrastructure. Meanwhile, "parking innovation" got a relatively low score of 73.41 out of 100.
For "business tech infrastructure," Montreal lost a lot of points in the "business innovation" subcategory, claiming only 57.92. It was also held back by its "internet connectivity" score but gained ground with a cool 86.08 out of 100 on the "e-payments" subcategory.
Finally, Montreal was also unfortunately held back by its low-70s scores for its "climate response," "waste management" and "green buildings." Our city made up for these low marks with its performance in the "green energy" subcategory, with a score of 85.62 out of 100.