Issue 17-18: 2016 Sub-Provincial Population Estimates

January 26, 2017

B.C. Regional Districts

At the provincial level, the B.C. population was an estimated 4,751,612 as of July 1, 2016. The B.C. population grew by 1.2% between July 1st 2015 and June 30th 2016 – an increase of almost 59,000 persons.

The Squamish-Lillooet (+2.3%) and Nanaimo (+2.2%) regional districts experienced the highest relative growth between 2015 and 2016 followed by Greater Vancouver (+1.6%) and Central Okanagan (+1.6%) regional districts.

In absolute terms, the Greater Vancouver regional district (GVRD) saw the largest increase in population in the twelve months ending June 30th, 2016 (+41,469), followed by the Capital regional district (+4,815). In contrast, Kitimat-Stikine (-2.4%) and Mount Waddington (-2.0%) continued to slide, losing a combined 1,138 persons to other areas during the same reference period. The GVRD has seen growth of 7.8% in the five years since 2011.

B.C. Municipalities

Amongst larger municipalities – those with at least 5,000 persons – the City of Langford (+6.7%) and the District Municipality of Mission (+3.9%) saw the largest relative increases in population since July 1st, 2015. In absolute terms, Surrey continued to attract the most newcomers between July 1st, 2015 and June 30th, 2016 (+16,641 persons or +3.2%).

Other large (5,000+ persons) municipalities that experienced high relative growth during the past year include Maple Ridge (+3.5%), the District Municipality of Langley (+3.3%) and the City of Courtenay (+3.1%).

Among municipalities with populations fewer than 5,000 people, Chetwynd (+4.7%), Tofino (+3.9%) and Anmore (+3.7%) reported the highest growth rates from 2015 to 2016.

one of the largest (100,000+ persons) municipalities in the province showed population declines from 2015 to 2016. Amid municipalities with more than 5,000 people, the City of Terrace and the Kitimat District Municipality reported the greatest relative declines (-4.5% and -3.5%, respectively).

Compared to all municipalities, Port Edward saw the largest relative decline in population between 2015 and 2016 (-5.8% or -29 persons). In absolute terms, Prince George experienced the largest decline (-1,011 persons or -1.4%).