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Living in Manitoba


Portage Ave.
Portage Ave.

Winnipeg is the capital and largest city of the province of Manitoba. Located in Western Canada, near where the Canadian Shield meets the Prairies, Winnipeg plays a prominent role in transportation, finance, manufacturing, agriculture and education. It is known as the "Gateway to the West" due to its location on the Canadian transportation network.

The Canadian immigrant population in Winnipeg grew by 10.5% between 2001 and 2006, outpacing the total growth of the census metropolitan area (CMA) which increased by 2.8% in the same period. As of 2006, the Canadian immigrant population was 121,300, or 17.7% of the total population, as reported by the Canadian 2006 Census.

Winnipeg Skyline
Winnipeg Skyline
Geography and Climate

If you are considering immigrating to an isolated area consider Winnipeg. Winnipeg is situated just west of the longitudinal centre of Canada, and approximately 100 kilometres (60 miles) north of the border with the United States. It is near the eastern edge of the Canadian Prairies, and about 70 kilometres south of Lake Winnipeg. It is situated in the floodplain of the Red River and is surrounded by rich agricultural land. Winnipeg is very isolated from other large population centres. Only one urban area with over 500,000 people (the Twin Cities of Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota) is located within 1,000 kilometres of Winnipeg.

Due to its location in the centre of a large land mass and its distance from both mountains and oceans, Winnipeg has an extreme continental climate. The city’s northerly location is also influential, though Winnipeg is located farther south than London or Amsterdam. The city is famous for its long, cold and snowy winters, and is often referred to as “Winterpeg”. As a result anyone interested in Canadian immigration for the beautiful winter landscapes, should consider immigrating to Winnipeg.

In sharp contrast summers are warm to hot with frequent thunderstorms. The summers in Winnipeg are similar to those experienced in cities in the Midwestern United States. Spring and autumn are short and highly variable seasons. The weather is characterized by an abundance of sunshine throughout the year.

Top Regions of Birth for Recent Immigrants
Birth Region
United States of America
Central America
South America
Western Europe
Eastern Europe
Southern Europe
Northern Europe
Western Africa
Eastern Africa
Northern Africa
Central Africa
Southern Africa
West Central Asia and the Middle East
Eastern Asia
Southeast Asia
Southern Asia
Oceania and other
Winnipeg Immigration Profile

The City of Winnipeg is home to 694,668 residents, representing more than half of the total population of Manitoba. According to the Canadian 2006 Census, 1 in 5 Canadian immigrants in Winnipeg arrived in Canada between 2001 and 2006. These newcomers were predominantly born in Asia and the Middle East (58.8%), with the 29% from the Philippines.

During the period of 2001 to 2006 Winnipeg became home to 24,115 new Canadian immigrants. The chart to the left shows the regions of birth for the recent immigrants according to the Canadian 2006 Census.

Royal Canadian Mint in Winnipeg
Royal Canadian Mint in Winnipeg
Economy and Job Opportunities for Immigrants

Winnipeg is an important regional centre of commerce, industry, culture, finance, and government and offers many opportunities for Winnipeg immigrants. Winnipeg's largest employers are either government or government-funded institutions: the Province of Manitoba, the City of Winnipeg, the University of Manitoba, the Health Sciences Centre, the Casinos of Winnipeg, and Manitoba Hydro. Approximately 14% of the work force are employed in the public sector.

The Royal Canadian Mint located in eastern Winnipeg is where all circulating coinage in Canada is produced. The plant, established in 1975, also produces coins for many other countries in the world.

Education for Dependant Children and Post Secondary

There are four universities and one major college in Winnipeg: University of Manitoba, University of Winnipeg, Collège universitaire de Saint-Boniface, Canadian Mennonite University, and Red River College, making Winnipeg an attractive option for people that consider education an important factor when selecting an immigration destination.

The University of Manitoba is the largest university of the province of Manitoba, most comprehensive and only research-intensive post-secondary educational institution. It was founded in 1877, making it Western Canada’s first university.

The University of Winnipeg received its charter in 1967 but its roots date back more than 130 years. The founding colleges were Manitoba College 1871, and Wesley College 1888, which merged to form United College in 1938.

Education is a provincial government responsibility in Canada. In Manitoba, education is governed principally by The Public Schools Act and The Education Administration Act as well as regulations made under both Acts. Rights and responsibilities of the Minister of Education, Citizenship and Youth and the rights and responsibilities of school boards, principals, teachers, parents and students are set out in the legislation.

This unique side-spar bridge, the Esplanade Riel, is built exclusively for pedestrians
This unique side-spar bridge, the Esplanade Riel, is built exclusively for pedestrians
Arts and Culture

Winnipeg is well known across the prairies for its arts and culture. Among the popular cultural institutions in the city are: the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, the Winnipeg Art Gallery (WAG), the Manitoba Opera, the Manitoba Museum (formerly the Museum of Man and Nature), the Manitoba Theatre Centre, the Prairie Theatre Exchange, and the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra.

Anyone considering Canadian immigration for the arts should note that Winnipeg offers a unique opportunity for artists, Winnipeg is well known for its murals. Unique to this city many buildings in the downtown area and extending into some suburban areas have murals painted on the sides of buildings. Although some are advertisements for shops and other businesses many are historical paintings, school art projects, or downtown beautification projects. Murals can also be found on several of the downtown traffic light switch posts.

Winnipeg also has a thriving film community, beginning as early as 1897 with the films of James Freer to the production of local independent films of today, such as those by Guy Maddin. Several locally-produced and national television dramas have also been shot in Winnipeg. The National Film Board of Canada and the Winnipeg Film Group have produced numerous award-winning films.

Sports and Recreation

In 1972, the Winnipeg Jets were one of the original teams of the World Hockey Association and won three Avco World Trophy league titles in eight years. The Jets entered the National Hockey League in 1979 and played in Winnipeg until 1996. The Jets featured such Hall of Famers as WHA coach Rudy Pilous and players Bobby Hull, Dale Hawerchuk, and (briefly) Serge Savard, as well as potential Hall of Famers Teemu Selänne and Phil Housley.

Winnipeg has a team in the Canadian Football League, the Blue Bombers, who have won 10 Grey Cups, the league's championship trophy. The Winnipeg 'Pegs won the Grey Cup in 1935.

Minor-league baseball has a long history in Winnipeg. 1902-1942: Winnipeg Maroons of the original Northern League. 1953-1964: Winnipeg Goldeyes, an affiliate of the St. Louis Cardinals in the Class C Northern League. 1970-1971: Winnipeg Whips, AAA affiliate of the Montreal Expos. In 1994, the Rochester Aces of the independent Northern League re-located to Winnipeg, and the team was renamed the Goldeyes. Initially, the team played at multi-purpose Winnipeg Stadium. In 1999, the team moved to the downtown CanWest Global Park, a baseball-only stadium. The Goldeyes are owned by current mayor Sam Katz.

The first track horse race in Winnipeg took place in 1922. Whittier Park and Polo Park were used as racetracks in the past. Today, Assiniboia Downs is a six and one half furlong oval located on the western edge of the city. It is operated as a non-profit organization by the Manitoba Jockey Club. Live thoroughbred horseracing takes place in the summer.

Winnipeg hosted the 1967 Pan American Games and 1999 Pan American Games.

And is also home to many of the world's best curling teams and has hosted the World Curling Championships in 1978, 1991 and 2003.