The city is an excellent base of operations for accessing fast-growing markets in Western Canada and beyond. Real opportunities exist in distilling, specialty crop processing, greenhouse vegetable processing, professional services, and retail. Which is to say nothing of opportunities in oil and gas — when it bounces back.
Indeed, Medicine Hat offers investors and entrepreneurs distinct advantages over other Western Canadian jurisdictions when it comes to operating cost, market access, and quality of life.
- Low cost operating environment. Medicine Hat has Western Canada’s lowest tax and utility rates (source).
- Competitive lease rates. Starting at $7 per square foot for industrial space and $12 per square foot for prime commercial space, lease rates are cost-competitive to similar sized Western Canadian cities (source).
- Competitive labour rates. At $22.74 per hour, the average hourly wage in Medicine Hat represents a 15% discount over the Alberta average (source).
- Good labour availability. Medicine Hat is a young community with a median age of 39 years and a labour force of over 20,000 people in the 20-44 year old range (source). The labour market is balanced with an unemployment rate hovering around 6% (source).
- Opportunity for entrepreneurs. Medicine Hat is home to two vibrant farmers markets and a whole host of small business support services including Community Futures Entre Corp, Alberta Innovates Technology Futures, and coworking at The Compass.
- Affordable cost of living. The average home price in Medicine Hat is hovering at $275,000, offering a steep discount to neighbouring Western Canadian centres (source).
- Excellent market access. Medicine Hat is located on the Trans Canada Highway (Highway #1), the Crows Nest Highway (Highway #3), and the CP main line. The city is less than a day’s drive to major markets including Calgary, Edmonton, Saskatoon, Regina, Spokane, and Williston.The Medicine Hat Regional airport offers daily connections to Calgary, jumping off point to the world (map).
- Great hospitals and schools. Medicine Hat is home to a full-service hospital and a comprehensive community college serving the needs of a local trading area numbering roughly 95,000.
- A creative community. Medicine Hat is an emerging creative city anchored by Medalta’s Shaw Centre, Visual Communications at Medicine Hat College, and a vibrant community of designers, musicians, photographers, and entrepreneurs.
- Enviable quality of life. The City-owned utility pays a dividend that in turn contributes to a quality of life that is second to none. Medicine Hat is home to a number of world-class facilities including the Canalta Centre, the Esplanade, and the Family Leisure Centre.
From a business perspective, it makes sense to invest in Medicine Hat. The city offers a low cost operating environment, market access, and a high quality of life.
To experience more of what the city has to offer, contact Invest Medicine Hat for your customized tour.