Thunder Bay, ON

Population: 111,499 livability score shield

Key findings

  • Thunder Bay has a Livability Score of 73/100, which is considered excellent
  • Thunder Bay crime rates are 66% higher than the Ontario average
  • Cost of living in Thunder Bay is 32% lower than the Ontario average
  • Thunder Bay real estate prices are 70% lower than the Ontario average
  • Rental prices in Thunder Bay are 51% lower than the Ontario average

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      Thunder Bay, ON

      Situated on the banks of Lake Superior in northwestern Ontario, the modern city of Thunder Bay is built around two places extremely important to Canadian history: Fort William, the hub of the Canadian Fur Trade and Port Arthur, the westernmost frontier of the Great Lakes navigation route. The modern city takes its name from the “Thunder Bay” located on the northern shore of Lake Superior and today is a tranquil city with diverse neighborhoods that is proud of its deep roots in Canada’s history.

      Finding a great place to live is almost as important as the home or rental that you choose to live. In northern Thunder Bay, you’ll find a quiet community neighbourhood called Current River. It has amazing access to the lake and recreational trails perfect for family time. There are also high-rise Thunder Bay apartments that can be found with excellent views of the lake and the Sleeping Giant. The Sleeping Giant is a formation of mesas and sills which looks like a giant sleeping on its back! There are great schools in the area which include both public and Catholic schools. The library is also close by car. In terms of shopping there are a few conveniences stores in the area. But, you’ll have to jump in your car to County Fair Plaza or Downtown North to make any major shopping trips.

      Quality of homes and rentals tend to vary sharply by Thunder Bay’s areas and neighborhoods. As the original town of Thunder Bay developed from the City Centers of Fort William and Port Arthur, it is these downtown areas that have the oldest buildings and significantly lower prices. Neighborhoods in Port Arthur generally have higher quality housing options and tend to be more spacious while located in residential communities. Larger housing projects, which are the newest and most expensive - tend to be located in the suburban areas of Thunder Bay.

      In past years, Thunder Bay has struggled with higher than average crime rates. However, over the last five years, crime rates have come down by nearly 30%. It is still important to do your research as some neighbourhoods still struggle with high crime.

      In addition to the numerous historic sites located both in Port William and Forth Arthur, immerse yourself in Thunder Bay’s history with an evening stroll through the bay areas. You’ll be able to see remnants of the city’s architectural past and admire stunning views of Lake Superior.

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      Source: The Thunder Bay, ON data and statistics displayed above are derived from Statistics Canada and updated for 2021 by Environics Analytics.