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Vancouver vs Seattle

A Tale of Two Cities

We work in commodities; they work for Microsoft. They earn more; our real estate costs more. We have less violent crime; they have less property crime. Seattle and Vancouver have major differences, sure, but you could also argue that no two cities are more alike, right down to their kooky burrito joints, touristy public markets and gentrifying port-side neighbourhoods.

By Rosemary Poole and Lucas Lee

SEATTLE
VS.
VANCOUVER
Grey’s Anatomy
As seen on
Battlestar Galactica
573,000/3,460,400
Population city/
region (2005)
583,267/2,155,880
33
Median age
37
14.3%, making it the fittest city in the U.S.
% of the population considered overweight
12%, making it the fittest city in Canada
Microsoft, Amazon
Washington Mutual, Starbucks
Home of
Telus, Canfor, West Fraser Timber, Teekay Shipping, Goldcorp
Bimbos Bitchin’
Burrito Kitchen
506 E. Pine St., Belltown, 206-329-9978
Hole in the wall
burrito joint
Budgies Burritos
44 Kingsway Ave., Mount Pleasant, 604-874-5408
Pioneer Square, a long-troubled historic neighbourhood by the port
Hot neighbourhood
Gastown, a long-
troubled historic neighbourhood by the port
June 6, 1889
Date downtown burned to the ground
June 13, 1886
“Skid Road”
Invented the term
“Skid Row”
Seattle Art Museum
Just expanded, reopens
May 17
Largest art gallery
Vancouver Art Gallery
Looking for new digs
Seattle Seahawks
Estimated value:
$823-million (U.S.)
Biggest sports franchise
Vancouver Canucks
Estimated value:
$192-million (U.S.)
Greg Nickels
Nationally recognized for taking Seattle green and adopting the Kyoto protocol
Mayor’s green record
Sam Sullivan
Wants his new ecodensity initiative to be nationally recognized
30%
Voter turnout in last
civic election
32.4%
On Mercer Island, an exclusive enclave with multimillion-dollar water views
The city’s wealthiest residents live…
In West Vancouver, an exclusive enclave with multimillion-dollar
water views
Bill Gates
Net worth: $53-billion (U.S.)
Latest project: Windows Vista
Richest local
Jimmy Pattison
Net worth: $4.5-billion
Latest project: 24 Hours
Pike Place, which opened in 1907
Public market the
tourists flock to
Granville Island, which was inspired by Pike Place
A ghastly crime or house fire
Typical lead story on nightly newscast
Used to be the weather,
now it’s the Pickton trial
30
Number of murders last year
15
39,787
Property crime
incidents last year
49,736 (but down 4.7% from last year)
Going from bad to worse
Commute times from the outer suburbs, such as Bellevue, have risen 14 minutes in the past two years—it now takes 56 minutes for a one-way trip
Commute times
Holding steady—and going down? Last summer, Statistics Canada reported commutes in Greater Vancouver take roughly the same time or a little less than they did in 1992—bucking the national trend
$72,250 (U.S.)
Average household income
$56,200
Tom Douglas
Inventory: six restaurants, a bakery, a catering business, three cookbooks, a radio show, an Iron Chef America victory, and a line of sauces and spice rubs
Superstar chef
Rob Feenie
Inventory: two restaurants (a third one rumoured to be opening in Toronto soon), an Iron Chef America victory, an American Express campaign and three cookbooks

 



READ MORE IN THE SEATTLE SERIES:

36 Hours in Seattle: Where to eat, drink, shop and sightsee.

Bed Check: Reviews of three very different Seattle hotels.

Culture Crawl: Our ranking of Seattle's independent coffeehouses, and listings of the best local books and music acts.

The New Seattle: What Vancouver can learn from its Pacific sister.

 



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