The truth is, it can change a lot depending on who you talk to.
In our summer-long competition to whittle 192 neighbourhoods in Metro Vancouver down to one champion, some contenders have been rural, some suburban, some full of condos.
Some of the neighbourhoods that won multiple rounds were developed around streetcars, some around vehicles, and some around SkyTrain.
For some folks, quiet streets, neighbours you've known for years, outdoor activities and tranquillity are important factors. For others, it's accessible transit, great restaurants, cultural diversity and affordable housing.
About the only common denominator in this competition seemed to be places that highlight their heritage or unique culture — but those neighbourhoods also have bitter political fights on how to maintain that status quo with the development pressures of being so desirable.
In Vancouver, Mount Pleasant is a dense neighbourhood, in the centre of Metro Vancouver's biggest city, an area full of breweries and cafés and restaurants with cuisines from all over the world.
Watch | Historical footage of Mt. Pleasant and interviews with residents about why their neighbourhood is special
In Richmond, Steveston is essentially a classic suburb adjoining a fishing pier, a main street that doubles as a storybook movie set, with museums and waterfront parks and heritage markers in all directions.
Watch | Footage of picturesque Steveston's storybook waterfront and interviews with residents about its fishing origins and culture and why it's so beloved:
Metro Vancouver is a place of 2.5 million people, with geographical features and unique origins separating them into hundreds of unique neighbourhoods.
After more than 450,000 votes, these are the two you've chosen as the best.
It shows the breadth of values in what makes a great neighbourhood — and it also shows that there's no definition of what makes one great.
But that's where you come in. Until midnight on Monday, Aug. 24, you can vote on which one will be crowned the best.
We'll reveal the winner on Aug. 28 on The Early Edition.
Until then, thanks for playing along.
Tale of the tape
- Average Age: 38.
- Average household size: 1.8.
- Renter households: 61 per cent
- Average total household income (approx.): $81,000
- Visible minorities as a percentage of neighbourhood population: 32 per cent
- Road to the Final: First Round bye, defeated Riley Park 77-23%, Strathcona 72-28%, Grandview-Woodland 62-38%, Olympic Village 72-28%, West End 51-49% and Fort Langley 53-47%.
- Average age: 43.4.
- Average household size: 2.5.
- Renter households: 35.5 per cent.
- Average total household income: $142,000.
- Visible minorities as a percentage of neighbourhood population: 42.8 per cent.
- Road to the Final: First Round bye, defeated Seafair 93-7%, Thompson 94-6%, Garden City 94-6%, Queen's Park 52-48%, Burnaby Heights 53-47% and Pitt Meadows 56-44%.
How we got here