The name Trois-Rivières, which means “three rivers, comes from the city's location at the confluence of the Saint Lawrence and Saint
Maurice Rivers--where the Saint Maurice splits into three mouths around two islands as it flows into the Saint Lawrence. The city has always had a way with words and is considered “The Poetry Capital of Quebec.”
If you’re interested in moving to this eclectic French-Canadian city, read on to learn more.
Trois-Rivières has a humid continental climate, so it experiences all four seasons each year. However, the city is generally cold and snowy. Winters are long and springs and autumns are cool and short. Summers get warm, but hardly ever hot. The average Trois-Rivières summertime high is just 24 degrees Celsius. Meanwhile, winter lows regularly reach -17.
Snow is frequent in Trois-Rivières, so you can expect snow cover from December through March. Precipitation can occur at any time of the year, but is most frequent during summer.
In 2002 Trois-Rivières gained several new neighbourhoods when it merged with Cap-de-la-Madeleine, Sainte-Marthe-du-Cap, Saint-Louis-de-France, Trois-Rivières-Ouest, and Pointe-du-Lac. Each of these areas maintains a bit of their old cultural identities. The original city, now called Old Town, is now one of many neighbourhoods with distinct cultures. For example, most of the architecture in Old Town is appropriately a century old.
Trois-Rivières is a francophone city, and since it is smaller than Montreal and Quebec, it does not regularly translate into English. French is the native tongue for 97 percent of the city, despite a few English immigrant communities.
Registering Your Car in Trois-Rivières
If you are planning a move to Trois-Rivières from outside of Quebec, you will need to register your vehicle according to the province’s regulations. Keep in mind that Quebec has its own set of rules that can be quite different from other Canadian provinces. Go to SAAQ
, Quebec’s government auto insurance site, to get all the information you need for your registration.
Société de transport de Trois-Rivières provides the city with local bus service. Meanwhile, Via Rail provides intercity train routes to Trois-Rivières from Montreal and Quebec City.
Trois-Rivières’ most important roadway is the Laviolette Bridge because it is the only way for vehicles to cross the Saint Lawrence River between Montreal and Quebec City.
Trois-Rivières Airport is an airport of entry for the city, but it does not regularly provide outgoing flights and is not an international airport. The nearest international airport is Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport, which is 122 kilometres away.
Three Rivers Academy is Trois-Rivières’ primary high school for English-speaking students. The Central Quebec School Board runs the city's few English-speaking schools. Maurice Academy is its elementary school counterpart in the city.
The Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières is the city’s biggest post-secondary institution. It enrolls about 14,000 students each year. If you’re interesting in applying there, you should know that it is primarily a French-speaking university and it even recommends on its official website
that English-speaking students take a class in French immersion to adjust to its other classes.
Trois-Rivières is considered Canada’s oldest industrial city. It built its economy on the paper and pulp industry during most of the 20th century. When print media started dying, Trois-Rivières’ economy began to die with it. The city’s unemployment rate soared up to 14 percent in the 1990s.
Thankfully, the city has since reorganized its major industries to become more sustainable. At 6.8 percent, Trois-Rivières’ unemployment rate is currently just 0.2 percentage points higher than the national average. There are still three operational paper mills in the city, but technology industries are playing an increasingly large role in the Trois-Rivières economy as time goes on.
The city’s advantageous location on the Saint Lawrence River between Montreal and Quebec City keeps Trois-Rivières an important commercial hub. Trois-Rivières ships a large quantity of goods through its infrasture since it is right in the middle of French Canada’s two most important cities.
Major Trois-Rivières employers include:
- Kruger: A paper company with two facilities in the city.
- Marmen Incorporated: A company that manufactures wind turbines for renewable energy.
- The Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières: The city’s only university.
Trois-Rivières Cost of Living
Trois-Rivières has a low cost of living. Like many cities in Quebec, Trois-Rivières has a low cost of living. Rent prices are incredibly low with residents reporting monthly rates of $340 for a one bedroom apartment in a low-demand section of town and $925 for a two bedroom apartment in the expensive part of the city.Utilities and most groceries are also cheaper in Trois-Rivières than they are in nearby cities like Quebec City.
Trois-Rivières Culture and Contemporary Life
Trois-Rivières is an eclectic city that draws tourists by being an attractive stop between Montreal and Quebec City. Most of its attractions are located in the Old Town neighbourhood. Boulevard des Forges is lined with the city’s trademark old architecture and contains a variety of shops, restaurants, clubs and bars.
The Festival International de la Poésie is an international poetry festival that helps earn the city’s its distinction as the “Poetry Capital of Quebec.”
FestiVoix de Trois-Rivières is another popular festival held for 10 days in the summer. This music festival regularly draws over 300,000 visitors each year.
If you’re looking for a non-traditional attraction, you can go to jail. The Old Prison of Trois-Rivières is a former real-life prison that now acts as a unique tourist trap. The facilities have not been operational since 1986, guided tours are offered to see just how bleak the prison experience was for the inmates. You can even reserve a one-night stay in the prison to see what it was really like to be in jail!
For a more traditional cultural experience, visit the Québec Museum of Folk Culture. This museum regularly presents six diverse exhibits.
Trois-Rivières Moving Resources
Are you ready to move to Trois-Rivières? Topmoving.ca has a database of moving companies that can help you. Get at least three quotes from different companies so you can compare prices and get the best deal for your desired service.
Trois-Rivières Relocation Tips
- You need to learn French if you wish to live in Trois-Rivières. About 96 percent of the population speaks it exclusively.
- Housing is very cheap in Trois-Rivières, so you can afford to shop around.
- If you wish to fly out of Trois-Rivières, you'll need to catch a flight from Quebec's international airport rather than the local Trois-Rivières Airport.
- Trois Rivieres: The city's official website.
- Trois-Rivieres News: An english-language news source for the city.
- SAAQ: Get information on registering your car in Quebec.
- Numbeo: Look at Trois-Rivières' average cost of living expenses in the online compiler.
- UQTR: See what the city's university has to offer on its website.