Barrie is the 34th largest city in Canada. Its population is about 136,063. The city is located in central Ontario, Canada on the western shore of Lake Simcoe.
Interestingly, even though the city is located in Simcoe County it’s politically independent.
The city is located in what is known as the "The Greater Golden Horseshoe" which is a densely populated and industrialised area of Ontario.
This section makes up 68 percent of the population of Ontario and 26 percent of the population of Canada. Barrie originally started as a set of houses and warehouses at the foot of the Nine Mile Portage from Kempenfelt Bay to Fort Willow. It also played a vital part in the war of 1812 because British forces used it as a supply depot.
The economy is well-rounded with several different industries offering vital employment for the city residents. A notable fact is that about 14,800 commutes into Barrie for employment.
Tourism plays a major role in Barrie’s economy. The city has many historical buildings downtown that has been well maintained over the years.
These buildings are major tourist attractions. Also, downtown Barrie is becoming well-known for fashion boutiques.
City: 76.99 km2
Urban: 171.53 km2
Metro: 897.47 km2
Barrie is home to some of the best performing and fine arts venues in all of Canada.
Their notable live performing companies are Theatre by the Bay, Talk Is Free Theatre and the Huronia Symphony.
The Strolling Youth Players, and the Kempenfelt Community Players also perform in Barrie. Georgian College puts on a circuit of concerts for local music lovers. The two main performing art venues are the Mady Centre for the Performing Arts, and the Georgian Theatre. Mady Centre is located in downtown Barrie, at the Five Points intersection. The Georgian Theatre is located in Barrie’s north end right on the campus.The city also has many independent galleries and studios which are mainly located in Lakeshore Mews which is behind Dunlop Street. Local,Lakeshore Mews, artists organize the” Arts Ce Soir” which is an all-night celebration of contemporary visual, musical, theatrical and literary art. Barrie has many rich and colorful events for those with an artistic flair.
Some notable neighbourhoods in Barrie are The Grove, Queen’s Park, Downtown, West Village, Brock Park and Allandale.
Specifically, "The Grove" encompasses Grove Street, Davidson Street, Queen Street and Owen Street are some of its roadways. This neighbourhood blends newly constructed homes with historical homes. The streets are well maintained and are lined with lush trees. There is a mixture of professionals and artists living in the neighbourhood. The houses are very well kept in this area.
The Real Estate market looks very bright and promising for Barrie moving into 2016. The housing starts will increase by 4 percent to around 1,200-1,300. The reasons for the
increase are growth in migration and employment which will support the increased new housing starts.
Another positive sign for the real estate market is that existing house sales will remain strong in 2016 which translates to 4,800 houses for sale in 2016. The prices of existing homes are at an average of $ 450,000 dollars. Sales of single-detached homes will increase as well in 2016. The average rent for a two-bedroom apartment will be at $1158 a month a slight increase over 2015.
The inventory for available housing was down to 1.7 percent which is unprecedented for the Barrie area. Promising signs that houses are being sold rapidly as new residents move in. The new house listings will have some impact on this issue but the results are yet to be seen.
The prices for homes have risen sharply recently increasing from $50,000-$100,000 showing a healthy demand for homes in Barrie, Canada. The housing market promises to remain healthy over the next year or so.
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Data source: Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB) MLS® System/Barrie & District Association of REALTORS® (BDAR) report for 2020/2021.
Barrie is rich in elementary schools with about 42 located within its city limits. The city has one public school board and one Catholic school
board. The Simcoe County District School Board administers public education in Barrie and Simcoe County while the Simcoe Muskoka Catholic
District School Board administers to all the Catholic schools in the Simcoe and Muskoka areas.
There is no shortage of k-12 schools in the Barrie area so parents have many choices to select from. According to the Fraser report for EQAO math tests, as well as the Grade 10 Ontario Secondary School Literacy Tests. Barrie High schools ranked at 6.0 on a scale of 1-10. This is above average overall. The schools seem to be in pretty good shape. Specifically, Eastview scored a 6.8, Barrie North scored 6.5, and Nouvelle Alliance scored 6.2, as did Barrie Central. RoméoDallaire scored a 6.1 and Bear Creek netted a 5.8. So for the most part, these schools rated above average on these 2 batteries of tests.
Georgian College is a shining light in the educational system of Barrie. It has a full-time student body of over 10,000 and part-time student bodies of about 25,000, which are very healthy numbers overall. The college has a splendid reputation within Barrie and globally. They have many fine quality programs and they are very well-known in Canada. They also boast a 94 percent graduation rate which is the highest in Ontario. Their student and employment ratings remain very high as well.