The remarkably low cost-of-living in Montreal is definitely palpable.
Cheap rents and public transit costs make the city one of the most livable in the world.
Affordable prices are quickly disappearing, however. As condo constructionbooms downtown and foreign investment continues to spur development, living expenses across the city are on the rise.
That's troubling, especially considering that, according to the Montreal Gazette and Statistics Canada, salaries in the Montreal metro area are still among the lowest in Canada. That's probably why so many young people are opting for other urban centres.
Despite a rise in the urban median salary, undoubtedly because of the wealthy people flocking to fill the new luxury condos downtown, Montreal residents are generally paid significantly less than their counterparts in other major Canadian cities.
Economic inequality is also on the rise. While Montreal has largely avoided the chasmic divide between wealthy and poor citizens that plagues Vancouver and Toronto, it, too, is succumbing to the unfortunate national trend.
The trend has caused a massive displacement of longtime residents in Canada's other two large cities and is likely behind a recent spike in crime.
Montreal will only be able to avoid a similar fate with public investment in affordable housing and new regulations to reverse inequality.
So while a lower median salary means that Montreal is more equitable than other Canadian cities, it also means that, for now, Montreal residents are less economically powerful than other Canadians.