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Gatineau, has a population of over 260,000 people and is situated in the southern portion of the province, sharing the Quebec/ Quebec border with Ottawa, Quebec. It covers over 381 square kilometres and is located close to the communities of Chelsea, Luskville, L’Ange-Gardien, and Lac-McGregor. The city is located where the Gatineau River meets the Ottawa River, and is close to the Parc de la Gatineau. Gatineau has a great mix of residential, urban, and natural areas to choose from.
The average residential sale prices in Gatineau range between $200,000 and $300,000. In the northern section, there is a mix of higherpriced, newer single-family homes, as well as some more affordable, older single-family homes. Condo options are also available in this area, as are affordable vacant lots. The central section offers condo options and single-family homes, as well as commercial properties (including industrial options) and vacant land. The southern section has a mix of condos and single-family homes (both older and newer). Commercial properties and vacant land can be hard to find in this section.
Vacancy rates in Gatineau have remained fairly stable over the past few years, at or below 6%. Rent costs have also remained stable over the past several years. Suites in apartment complexes built in the past 10 years tend to cost $200 to $300 more per month than suites in older buildings. Depending on the area of the city, rent costs for apartments can range between $600 for a one-bedroom apartment and$850 for a three-bedroom (or more) apartment. Condominium suites are also available for rent in the city, usually with rent costs that are similar to those for apartment suites.
One of the major industries in Gatineau is government services, due to the city’s close proximity to the nation’s capital. Government agencies and ministries that are headquartered in Gatineau includeEnvironment Canada, Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, the Canadian International Development Agency, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada, Public Works and Government Services Canada, and Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada.Other industries in the city include tourism, technology, agri-food, and services. The city’s unemployment rate tends to sit between5% and 7% each year, which is similar to national averages.
Public transportation in the city is operated by the Société de transport de l'Outaouais, which has a fleet of over 300 buses that service over 60 routes throughout the city at all times of the day, and many are accessible for those with children, disabilities, or mobility issues.The city is also serviced by OC Transpo (Ottawa’s bus service), VIA Rail (train), Greyhound (long-distance bus), and the Gatineau-Ottawa Executive Airport (small municipal airport).Tickets are not interchangeable between Société de transport de l'Outaouais and OC Transpo buses, but passes and transfers from one system to another do not require additional payment.
The three French-language school boards in Gatineau are Commission scolaire des Portages-de-l'Outaouais, the Commission scolaire au Coeur-des-Vallées, and the Commission scolaire des Draveurs. The Western Quebec School Board operates English-language schools in the area. Examples of schools in the city include École Côte-du-Nord, École de l’Amérique-Française, École des Cavaliers, Saint-Michel, Buckingham Elementary School, Philemon Wright High School, and Symmes Junior High School. There are also private school options in the city. Post-secondary institutions in the city include Cégep de l'Outaouais, which offers programs in education, technology, engineering, business, accounting, graphic arts, communications, and healthcare; Heritage College, with courses in education, nursing, information technology, accounting, and tourism; and Université du Québec en Outaouais (undergraduate and postgraduate programs).
The Canadian Museum of History has over a million visitors per year, making it the most visited museum in Canada. The museum has a number of displays and exhibits, some permanent and some travelling, that focus on various historical aspects of Canada and its people. The museum also has an IMAX theatre and a separate children’s museum with plenty of hands-on activities. Jacques-Cartier Park offers recreational paths for walking and cycling, views of the Ottawa River and Rideau Falls, and the Hull Marina. The park was built in the 1930s and was named after one of Canada’s early explorers. It includes over 22 hectares of greenspace. The city is also home to a number of other parks, historic sites, and community and recreational centres.