Here’s one readers thoughts on the comparison between living in these two ‘world class’ cities.
Right now I’m renting an apartment in central Paris for two months. I agree completely with the previous comment that these ratings are usually aimed at the rich. I’m a member of the working class and the important question for me is whether a city works for those of us who do the work.
Some things I’ve noticed here in Paris. The cost of shelter is very high, particularly in central Paris, and living spaces are small. But the city itself functions as a kind of back yard and social space for those who live here.
If you buy an apartment you know it’s going to last because it’s usually been around for well over a hundred years already. These things are solid!
Despite the high cost of shelter I see a lot of families with children. The age of the parents are noticeably younger than in Vancouver. It’s not uncommon to see parents with two and three kids. Unlike Vancouver the parks and playgrounds are often full of children. This no doubt reflects the efforts by the French government to assist families with children. Daycare is free. Almost every school has after school care. Families receive significant subsidies for their children. Families with lower incomes receive financial assistance to pay for housing. The minimum wage is significantly higher. Working parents have a lot of vacation time.
These advantages are a product of a working class that has a strong history of fighting for measures that benefit everyone. As everywhere there are problems but nothing like the extreme challenges that face parents in Vancouver, particularly the toxic combination of high housing costs combined with unaffordable and often inaccessible daycare. Canadian governments feel no need to do anything about it given the lack of organized resistance to these hardships.
Read the full comment here.
Any other Vancouverites here who have lived / are living in another city? What are your thoughts on how the two compare?