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New West is the fastest-growing city in Metro Vancouver. This is why

Latest BC Stats show New West is growing the fastest in the region
Down by the riverfront in New Westminster. According to BC Stats, the City of New Westminster grew by 2.9 per cent between July 1, 2019 and July 1, 2020.

The latest BC Stats are out and they confirm something we’ve always suspected.

That people really want to come live in New Westminster.

The provincial agency has released its annual municipal population estimates. The numbers reflect those released by Statistics Canada in their estimates, which came out in January. They vary only how they round percentage changes.

According to BC Stats, the City of New Westminster grew by 2.9 per cent between July 1, 2019 and July 1, 2020 for a total of 82,590 people.

The City of North Vancouver was the third-fastest growing municipality in Metro Vancouver that year at two per cent, beaten out only by the City of Surrey (2.1 per cent) then New West.

New West is a great city to live in because it’s so walkable, it has great restaurants, great parks, is right on the water and has amazing annual events like Pride when there isn’t a global pandemic. There's also a thriving arts community. But it’s also full of people who care about their community and work to make it a better place. The city has also been a leader on the issue of reconciliation.

All of these things make New West a desirable place to move to, something that is also reflected in the local housing market.

Home sales throughout New West rose by 40.2% in the period between November, 2020 and January, 2021, when compared to the same period a year prior, according to the latest sales figures by the REBGV.

Not all Lower Mainland communities are growing, however.

The District of North Vancouver had 89,767 residents as of July 1, a loss 499 people from the year before, or a 0.6 per cent drop year over year.

The District of West Vancouver saw their population shift 336 downward – a loss of 0.8 per cent – for a total 2020 population of 43,805. In Metro Vancouver, only the Village of Anmore and the City of Pitt Meadows saw larger contractions in the population at three per cent and one per cent respectively.

The average growth rate for a Metro Vancouver municipality during that time was 1.1 per cent. According to BC Stats, Metro’s population added 30,889 in that time.

Across the province, the fastest-growing city was Langford at 4.9 per cent.

Metro Vancouver’s population has gone up by 155,496 since 2016, according to official estimates, which is about one per cent per year.

Since 2020, StatsCan has been calculating estimated municipal population changes using census and tax data. BC Stats then follows after having done its own analysis.

Statistics Canada calculates municipal population estimates by using the most recent census as a baseline and then factoring in changes in births, deaths and migration pulled from tax filings provided by Revenue Canada. The next full census will be carried out later this year with results to be released in 2022.

  • With additional reporting by Brent Richter, North Shore News