If you’re planning to move to a city in Canada, one possible choice is St. Thomas, Ontario. Located north of Lake Erie and in southern Ontario, St. Thomas is an energetic city with a population of only a little over 40,000 residents. Its location and the relatively uncongested area isn’t all that’s attractive about St. Thomas. Here are more compelling reasons to move here.
1. It Has a Rich History
Situated in Elgin County in Ontario, St. Thomas was first established as a settlement in 1810. It became the justify of Elgin County in 1844, organized as a village in 1852, followed by a town in 1861. As St. Thomas grew, it was finally converted into a city in 1881.
St. Thomas was named after Thomas Talbot, an avid promoter of the region. Historically, the city was home to several railway systems in the late 19th and 20th centuries. Since the first railway was completed here in 1856, St. Thomas has had 26 railways run through it, and over 100 trains per day passed through the city. After the decline of the railroads, St. Thomas had its fortunes shaped by the fast-rising automobile industry.
St. Thomas is famous for being the final resting place of world-famous Jumbo the circus elephant, who was unfortunately hit by a locomotive on Sept.15, 1885. A hundred years later, a statue of the famous pachyderm was put up in the city. St. Thomas also remains home to several heritage sites, such as the Wellington Street Public School, Balaclava St. School, Elmdale School, Elgin County Courthouse and St. Thomas City Hall. These and other attractions make St. Thomas one of those great places to visit in Canada.
2. The Cost of Living is Slightly Lower
While the cost of healthcare and food are a bit higher than the average, transportation and housing costs remain reasonable. The lower costs of housing and transportation make the cost of living in St. Thomas about 2% lower than the national average. The median combined income in St. Thomas on average is slightly over $70,000 a year, and the property tax rate in residential areas is 1.5332%.
3. It has Many Recreational Facilities
St. Thomas has many recreational facilities, both indoor and outdoor. Outdoor recreational facilities include Waterworks Park, Pinafore Park, and; TransCanada Hiking Trail. Pinafore Park offers 90 acres of breath-taking natural vistas. There are also walking trails, an aviary, wildlife sanctuary, and a picnic area in Pinafore Park. Waterworks is a splash park that also has large gardens and cross-country ski trails.
Indoor recreational facilities include the Joe Thornton Community Centre, with its 2 ice skating rinks, multipurpose gym and indoor walking and running trails. For golf players, St. Thomas has some of the best golf courses like the Redtail Golf Club and St. Thomas Golf & Country Club.
4. It’s Great for Road Trips
St. Thomas has an idyllic location if you plan to hop into your car and drive to the US. The city is relatively close to at least 5 US-Canada border crossings, with two of them having a distance of less than 200 kilometres. You can leave Canada for the US with a 3-day leisurely drive.
5. It has Great Schools
St. Thomas offers several good public schools like Arthur Voaden Secondary School, Central Elgin Collegiate Institute, St. Joseph’s High School, and Parkside Collegiate Institute. There’s also St. Thomas Community Christian School and Faith Christian Academy, two independent Christian elementary schools that educate students starting from K-6. If you have kids or plan to raise kids, St. Thomas is a good place to raise them. Ask a realtor about St. Thomas homes for sale when you finally decide to make the move.
There are indeed many places to move to in Canada. It’s a matter of what work you want to do, how much you can spend for rent or for a down payment on a house, and what sort of life you want for yourself or your family. Don’t limit yourself to one municipality, but try to take enough time to explore each city and have a basis for your comparisons.