Friday, January 14, 2011

Fredericton Rated Best Place To Retire In Canada

Once home to Maliseet and Mic Mac Indians and European settlers and later revived by loyalists fleeing the American Revolution, Fredericton became an important British military base. Fredericton, New Brunswick has since evolved into a moderately affluent, sophisticated small city and the administrative, educational and cultural capital of New Brunswick, making it one of the best places to retire in Canada.

Landscape: Fredericton is located at a lovely site astride the St. John River about 60 miles (100 kilometers) inland from the Bay of Fundy.

Climate: Fredericton has four distinct seasons with ample precipitation. Summers are sunny and warm; winters are cold with alternating humid and dry periods.

Quality of Life: Excellent. The air is clean, public transit is good around town, downtown is thriving and residents seem genuinely friendly and welcoming.

Housing: Fredericton has a good supply of housing and prices are incredibly low by Canadian and American standards.

Goods and Services: Goods and services are priced a little above Canadian norms but are 10% to 20% below U.S. averages. Medical care is inexpensive by U.S. standards.

Taxes: Federal and provincial income tax rates are modestly higher than in the U.S., but the combined federal and provincial sales tax on goods and services is twice the U.S. average. Property taxes and medical care costs are low.

Transportation: Fredericton offers good intra-city and intercity transportation via dial-a-ride and local bus service, Greater Fredericton Airport’s jet service and Acadian Lines’ intercity bus service.

Retail Services: Downtown Fredericton is a vital retailing center. Regent Mall and Brookside Mall provide traditional mall shopping.

Health Care: River Valley Health provides excellent medical care to west central New Brunswick from its base in Fredericton.

Community Services: In addition to excellent basic public services, Fredericton has two senior centers that operate as meeting places for special interest groups and offer activities.

Cultural and Educational Activities: Fredericton‘s vibrant performing and visual arts scene includes activities such as festivals, art displays and musical, dance and theatrical performances. The University of New Brunswick and St. Thomas University enrich the community culturally and educationally.

Recreational Activities: Outdoor activities are popular in all seasons in the beautiful St. John River Valley in and around Fredericton. Intercollegiate sports, movie theaters, restaurants, nightspots and festivals provide additional diversions.

Work and Volunteer Activities: Part-time work is generally available. The hospital, cultural venues, festivals and senior centers depend heavily on volunteers.

Crime Rates and Public Safety: Fredericton’s property crime rate is slightly above the national average whereas the violent crime rate is below the national norm. The community feels safe day and night.

Conclusion: Fredericton is an undiscovered gem among Canadian retirement places. This beautiful city offers an excellent quality of life with small-town ambiance and big-city services, making it one of the best places to retire in Canada.

Ratings courtesy of “Retire in Style, 60 Outstanding Places Across the USA and Canada” by Warren R. Bland, PhD (www.nextdecade.com)

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