Abitibi-Ouest is at the northwestern end of Abitibi-Témiscamingue. Bordered to the west by Ontario and to the north by the Nord-du-Québec region, Abitibi-Ouest is one of five regional county municipalities (MRCs) in the area. It is approximately 600 kilometres from Montreal and 555 km from Ottawa.
How do I find a place to live?
When looking for an apartment or a house in Quebec, it is recommended that you target websites and Facebook pages that specialize in real estate advertising. We have listed some links and groups that can help you with the search. Word of mouth can also be a good way to find a place, so talk to people you know and ask the Carrefour Jeunesse Emploi agent, too. You can also check bulleting boards in your workplace or in shopping malls, and do a tour of the neighbourhood to spot “For Rent” signs.
You can also contact Carrefour Jeunesse Emploi or firstname.lastname@example.org to take advantage of their network of contacts in the region.
How much is the average rent for an apartment in Abitibi-Ouest?
The average monthly rent for an apartment is $549 in La Sarre and $506 in Macamic, according to figures published by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (source: Rental Market Survey Data in Rural Areas (2,500 to 10,000 Residents )). Due to the low vacancy rate, however, one can expect the rent to be higher for a freshly renovated or newly built apartment.
Are apartments furnished and do they include heating and lighting?
Some apartments are furnished, heated and lit, but most are not. The lease will indicate if the cost of utilities is included in the monthly rent or if it is to be borne by the tenant.
Heating and electricity
Heating and electricity are not usually included in the cost of a rental unit. It is the tenant’s responsibility to contact Hydro-Québec for service. If heating and electricity are included, it will be indicated in the lease and the amount for this utility will be included in the monthly rent.
To receive electric service, you must contact Hydro-Québec (a crown corporation) to open an account when you move into the apartment. You may contact them by phone or sign up online.
Internet access is not usually included in the cost of a rental unit. It is the tenant’s responsibility to contact an Internet service provider. If Internet access is included, it will be indicated in the lease and the cost will be included in the monthly rent.
To obtain Internet access, you must contact an Internet services provider (ISP) that serves the region. There are several such providers in the area. We suggest that you take time to shop around and find the Internet bundle that best suits your needs and budget. It is also important to inquire about the required installation time and if any additional costs are to be expected for equipment and installation.
Câblevision- Available through Centre du Hi-Fi in La Sarre 31 5e Avenue Est, La Sarre
Phone: 1 819 333 6710
What modes of transportation are available in the region?
Although public transit and inter-city services are limited, there are a number of alternatives to the automobile for getting around the region. Residents of rural areas can use the services of Transport Coup de pouce, which works with local organizations to provide such options as carpooling, taxi, adapted transit and bus. You can also call a taxi, walk, or bike.
Coup de pouce public transport
Transport Coup de Pouce is a rural transit service the public can use to travel at any time and in absolute safety throughout the Abitibi-Ouest MRC.
Use of the service requires a client account. Complete the membership form and pay a $5 fee. The form is available at different points of sale and on the website of Transport Coup de pouce.
Once they are members, clients use Coup de pouce coupons, which are sold in booklets of 10 for $10. Each coupon has a $2 value and can also be used to pay transportation partners Taxi 6000 and the Maheux bus firm. Coupons must be purchased in advance.
Taxi 6000 provides paid passenger transport services throughout the Abitibi-Ouest region.
Phone: 819 333-6000
Intercity bus transport
Autobus Maheux is the passenger transport company serving the main cities in the Abitibi- Témiscamingue region. It also takes passengers to Montreal, Gatineau and Ottawa. Visit the website for schedules and tickets.
Corporation du transport public adapté d’Abitibi-Ouest provides a public transit service for people with disabilities or reduced mobility in the Abitibi-Ouest MRC.
Services are available Monday through Friday from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM on pre-established routes based on users’ needs. Requests for service must be made 24 hours in advance and depend on the vehicle’s availability.
The corporation makes vacant seats available to the populace when possible.
23 12e Avenue Ouest
La Sarre, Québec J9Z 2L5
If you don’t have a driver’s permit or need to renew yours, sign up with a driving school. Do this as soon as possible, as the waiting list can be long. The process of acquiring a driving permit in Quebec will take up to 12 months. You will be required to do 24 hours of theoretical study, 15 hours of practical training, and pass the practical test (on the road) given by the SAAQ.
École de conduite Centre de services scolaires du Lac-Abitibi (driving school and vocational training centre)
500 rue Principale, La Sarre
Phone: 819 333-2387
Carpooling (also called ridesharing) is another transportation option.
There are Facebook groups dedicated to carpooling where people look for passengers and others look for rides.
What kinds of recreational activities are enjoyed in Abitibi-Ouest?
Abitibi-Ouest is a vast playground in which a host of services have been created to meet demand from the region’s residents. Whether you’re a sports buff, a culture maven or a fan of leisure pursuits, you will find plenty of activities to keep you occupied and active.
Sports and leisure
Numerous facilities are in place throughout Abitibi-Ouest for sporting activities, including but not limited to parks, arenas, bicycle paths, gyms and fitness centres. What’s more, Abitibi-Ouest’s proximity to nature makes it easy to enjoy a wide range of sporting activities, such as aquatic sports, hiking, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and cycling. There are also hundreds of kilometres of trails for ATV riding and snowmobiling. Finally, there are a number of clubs where all ages can take part in sports such as hockey, soccer, swimming and skating.
Ville de La Sarre’s website lists all activities, clubs and sports associations as well as the locations of facilities like the Nicol Auto arena, the pool and the gymnasiums.
For a list of clubs, associations and schools covering all sporting activities such as hockey, curling, skating, and so on, please contact the CJE (Centre Jeunesse Emploi) or see the listing of organizations available on the Ville de La Sarre website.
Located on the outskirts of the urban area and accessible by rue Lambert, this paved path can be used for cycling, inline skating, nature walks, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. The trail runs for a five-kilometre distance and is perfectly suited to fun family outings.
The park is open year-round and all trails are now paved . Since 2017, dogs are allowed as long as they are leashed at all times.
The Participarc is located at the intersection of rue Principale and 12e avenue ouest. Nicely laid-out and ideally located, it features rest areas, children’s play sets, a water park for cooling off and sporting activities for the whole family. A paved circuit and pergola with tables have been set up to accommodate groups.
In the winter, a cross-country ski track is open to all, and a circular portion of the paved track becomes an outdoor skating rink.
Four tennis courts are located near the Cité étudiante Polyno, at 500 rue Principale. The courts are fenced-in and lighted.
To avoid wait times and enjoy a friendly match during peak times, book your court the same day or less than 24 hours in advance by calling (819) 333-2282, ext. 267. A city employee is posted onsite to monitor the courts and provide technical assistance if need be. Inquire about the rates for renting a court.
Beattie golf course in La Sarre
18 chemin du Golf, La Sarre
Phone: 819 333-9944
Outdoors we go, in sun or snow
Outdoors we go, in sun or snowFor all outdoor activities, such as walking, cycling, mountain biking, canoeing, kayaking, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, downhill skiing and other activities, please visit the Accès Plein Air Abitibi-Témiscamingue website.
Culture is alive and well in Abitibi-Ouest, where you’ll find libraries, festivals and cultural events, arts venues and over 100 artists working in the visual arts, literature, storytelling and music. La Sarre also has its own movie theatre and a number of cultural clubs and associations sure to interest you and the family.
The Ville de La Sarre website lists all cultural activities being held at the Maison de la culture, which also houses the library, the arts centre, and the Lilian Perreault theatre.
For a list of clubs, associations and schools covering all artistic fields such as dance, music, singing, improvisation, etc., contact the CJEAO or visit the Ville de La Sarre website for its index of organizations.
About the Job Market
I would like to live and work in Abitibi-Ouest, but I do not have a work permit.
The employability services provided by the region’s organizations are available only to persons who hold a work permit valid in Canada.
If you want to find out more about the immigration process, we suggest you follow the links to the government websites below:
When you’re ready, we’ll be there to welcome you to Abitibi-Ouest!
Are there any specific programs to help me develop and launch a commercial venture?
A variety of financing options are made available by governments and business support agencies. Eligibility criteria and target client groups vary from one program to another.
The Service de développement de la MRC d’Abitibi-Ouest and the SADC d’Abitibi-Ouest provide a free, accessible front-line service for people planning an entrepreneurial project. Once these agencies have identified your needs, they can direct you to the resources and programs that will help you secure financing for your new business project.