THE VALLEY ADVANTAGE

"Our story proves that you can succeed."

Wolfgang Thiel
 President, Spa Springs Mineral Water Company

THE VALLEY ADVANTAGE

Located close to the provincial capital, the Annapolis Valley offers a rich concentration of talent, post-secondary institutions, and R&D services, with a satisfying quality of life, in a place recognized internationally for its unique landscape and heritage.

Discover why the Annapolis Valley is a rewarding place to visit, live, study, work and invest.

People are attracted to our region by the balanced lifestyle, affordable real estate, excellent post-secondary programs, and safe, supportive communities with exceptional recreational options, health services, and neighbourhood schools. Our beautiful region, with its welcoming character, is graced with beaches and waterways, a strong arts and culture community, a rich heritage with national historic sites, and plentiful fresh produce, local wine, and craft breweries and distilleries to tour and enjoy. Plus, there is almost no traffic congestion.

The Annapolis Valley Advantage includes:

● Affordable neighborhoods close to Halifax

● Satisfying quality of life with strong social, cultural and recreation amenities, enabling employers to attract and retain a qualified workforce

● Strong education and training sector, supporting a diversified, loyal and productive workforce

● Post-secondary and government-funded R&D services, enabling innovation in ICT and agri-business, while providing a talent pool of local graduates and researchers

● Natural assets, a strong agricultural tradition and consumer demand are nourishing an expanding wine and craft beverage sector and culinary/food cluster

● Affordable and available commercial and industrial real estate reduces costs relative to other business centres

● A coordinated approach to regional development accelerates recruitment and connects businesses with resources and key government decision-makers

● Large manufacturers and exporters provide a secure and sustainable economic and employment base

● High-capacity broadband backbone supports institutions, services and businesses


15 Reasons to locate in the Annapolis Valley of Nova Scotia

Quality of life

Natural assets

Agri-food cluster

Workforce

R&D

Innovation

Talent

Land & property

Economic base

Education & training

Anchor employers

Broadband  

Strong business culture

Coordinated regional development


Location

Nova Scotia, in Canada, is located on the eastern seaboard of the North American continent. From an east-west perspective, the province is at the midpoint between California and the United Kingdom. The Annapolis Valley is centrally located within Nova Scotia. The eastern gateway to the Valley is an hour’s drive from the provincial capital of Halifax. The Valley also forms part of the “Golden Triangle” (Halifax-Truro-Valley) of research centres serving agri-business production and processing.

International airport and port

The eastern half of the Annapolis Valley region is about one hour from Halifax Stanfield International Airport (with U.S. pre-clearance) and the Port of Halifax, a fast and efficient gateway with the second largest natural harbour in the world, serviced by highly-developed air, road, rail and sea transportation and infrastructure.

Linked to markets

Highway 101 connects the region to the capital (Halifax Regional Municipality, to the southeast) and to Digby and Yarmouth in the southwest.

Within the Valley, CFB Greenwood airport supports civilian aviation. Outside the region, nearby transport links include Digby/Annapolis Regional Airport (YDG), South Shore Regional Airport (CYAU), Yarmouth International Airport (YQI), and ports in Yarmouth and Digby.

Atlantic time zone

Nova Scotia shares the same workday with Europe and the United States, which improves productivity.

Quality of Life

The Annapolis Valley region is an urban-rural corridor with a unique blend of affordable, safe and welcoming communities with excellent health and education services and amenities (social, recreational and cultural).

Recreation facilities include golf courses, sports centres, 200 km of walking and cycling trails, and ski hills.

  • 8 golf courses
  • 12 ice rinks (indoor), 11 ice surfaces (outdoors)
  • public pools: 4 in-door, 5 out-door, 4 community splashpads
  • 44 soccer fields
  • 15 baseball fields
  • 7 curling clubs
  • Sports facilities: Kings Mutual Century Centre, Louis Millet Community Complex, King’s-Edgehill Athletic Centre, Valley Indoor Soccer Facility, Acadia Athletics Complex, Annapolis Valley Shooting Sports Club, CFB Greenwood Fitness Center

Cultural amenities include 20-plus wineries, craft breweries, distilleries and a cidery; Grand-Pré National Historic Site / UNESCO World Heritage Site; museums, theatres and festivals; Oaklawn Farm Zoo and Upper Clements Parks; farmers’ markets and U-pick farms.

Education services include 40 schools, 2 adult schools, and 3 private schools (King’s-Edgehill School, Landmark East School, and Booker School)

Health services include 3 regional hospitals, 3 community health centres, and access to family doctors serving local communities.

Natural assets

In addition to more than 30 beaches and national and provincial parks, and abundant lakes and rivers, our natural assets include rich farmland, a climate suited to growing a wide variety of crops, and a shoreline along the Bay of Fundy, which is a natural tourist attraction as well as a test-bed for in-stream tidal energy development powered by the highest tides in the world.

Strong agricultural tradition & expanding wine and craft beverage sector & culinary/food cluster.

The Annapolis Valley is the bread basket – and the fruit basket – for the province of Nova Scotia.

Read more here & here

Workforce

The Nova Scotia Department of Labour and Advanced Education recently identified five key workforce advantages in the Annapolis Valley region:

  1. A loyal and productive workforce (with experience in agriculture and manufacturing)
  2. Among the lowest employee turnover rates in North America
  3. An unmatched quality of life and low cost of living (low land cost and affordable real estate)
  4. One of the strongest provincial educational training systems in Canada
  5. Programs to help firms recruit and train their workforce

Post-secondary and government-funded R&D services

Assets include: Atlantic Wine Institute at the Rural Innovation Centre at Acadia University; Kentville Research and Development Centre (part of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s national network); Tidal Research Institute at the Acadia Entrepreneurship Centre; Nova Scotia Community College Applied Research Group, Annapolis Valley Campus; Pilikan House, NSCC, Annapolis Valley Campus; Centre of Geographic Sciences, NSCC, Annapolis Valley Campus.

Read more here.

Innovation in ICT and agri-business

Read about businesses that are developing new services at the intersection between ICT and agri-business.

Perfect Location: Business Profile 1

Talent pool of local graduates and researchers

The Annapolis Valley is a welcoming place where businesses are encouraged to build strong links with students and researchers in our post-secondary institutions.

Read more here.

Affordable and available industrial sites

Read about two businesses that chose the Annapolis Valley location based on affordable and available real estate and development land.

Perfect Location: Business Profile 2

Perfect Location: Business Profile 3

Large manufacturers and exporters

Our major manufacturers include global companies, such as Michelin North America (Canada) Inc. and Xerium Technologies, Inc. (Weavexx Corporation), which have been operating and hiring in our communities for decades.

Watch the video to learn more.

Strong education and training sector

The Valley REN region has significant educational assets, including Acadia University and two Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC) campuses: the Kingstec Campus in Kentville and the Annapolis Valley Campus with two sites, in Middleton and Lawrencetown.

Acadia University is one of the oldest universities in Canada. For 25 consecutive years, Maclean’s has ranked Acadia as one of the top five undergraduate universities in Canada.

Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC) offers customized training solutions for large employers in the region, giving local firms a competitive advantage. The Middleton site of the Annapolis Valley Campus includes the Applied Research Group and Pilikan House, a living lab and demonstration site for energy efficiency and sustainable design. The Lawrencetown site of the Annapolis Valley Campus houses the Centre of Geographic Sciences (COGS), which is Canada's largest geomatics-focused learning environment. High-quality programs in the fields of surveying, mapping, land-use planning and related computer programming have earned COGS its reputation as a world leader. In addition to its suite of diploma programs, COGS also offers advanced diplomas in marine geomatics, remote sensing, geographic information systems (GIS), and business geographics.

Anchor employers

Some of the largest employers in the Annapolis Valley include Acadia University, Nova Scotia Community College (Kingstec and Annapolis Valley campuses), Canadian Forces Base Greenwood and hospitals. The largest private-sector employers include manufacturers, such as Michelin North America (Canada) Inc., CKF Inc. (Canadian Keyes Fibre), and Xerium; food processors, such as Eden Valley; Eassons Transport; private or charity nursing/seniors/health care services; large farming operations; and national/multinational supermarket chains and department stores. The largest employers by industry (2015) are retail trade (13.4 percent), health care and social assistance (12.6 percent), public administration (9.7 percent), manufacturing (8.8 percent), education (8 percent), construction (7.7 percent), and agriculture/forestry/fishing (6.5 percent).

High-capacity broadband backbone

The Valley Community Fibre Network is a high-capacity fibre-optic backbone network that connects the Annapolis Valley region of Nova Scotia with the provincial capital of Halifax.

Networking and collaboration

The Annapolis Valley has an extensive network of business associations to support entrepreneurs.

Glooscap Ventures, Acadia Entrepreneurship Centre / Rural Innovation Centre, Fusion Annapolis Valley, Wolfville Business Development Corporation, Kentville Development Corporation Ltd, Valley Business Leaders Initiative, Sip Chat Connect Business Networking, Avon Chamber of Commerce, Annapolis Valley Chamber of Commerce

Coordinated approach to regional development

Explore our website to learn about our coordinated approach to regional development in the Annapolis Valle

Community Profiles

“Communities working together to create a prosperous region”

The communities of the Annapolis Valley invite you to discover the quality of life that makes our region a rewarding place to visit, live, study, work and invest.

Learn more about the communities that make up the Valley REN >