Background: Population & Housing Trends
Based on the last three census record periods (2001 to 2006, 2006 to 2011, and 2011 to 2016), Canada is the fastest growing G7 country, with an average population growth rate of 1% per year.
Over the last census period, the Greater Vancouver Census Metropolitan Area (‘Vancouver CMA’ or ‘Metro Vancouver’; this area includes the City of White Rock), has outpaced the rest of Canada and British Columbia in terms of population growth, registering a 6.5% growth rate relative to the national growth rate of 5% and British Columbia’s rate of 5.6%.
Focusing in on White Rock, the City’s population grew by 3.2% between 2011 to 2016, and is now estimated to be about 20,000 residents - 57% of which (11,410 residents) are a part of the ‘working age’ (15 to 64 years of age) population category.
White Rock is also located within the fastest growing ‘sub-region’ of the Vancouver CMA; this sub-region includes Surrey (the second fastest growing municipality in the Vancouver CMA at 10.6%) and the Township of Langley (fastest growing municipality overall at 12.6%), which is within a seven-kilometer drive of White Rock.
Within this context, it is evident by observing regional construction activity that new growth and investment is happening across the Vancouver CMA, focused around rapid transit networks and within newly planned areas and well-established, regional destinations like White Rock.
Population and market trends also show that young professionals and aging baby boomers alike are opting for higher-density, multi-family housing options (i.e., apartments), and recent market information suggests a distinct ‘housing type shift’ within Metro Vancouver, where single-family homeowners are moving towards more multi-family options as well.
Another key factor is land economics, as rising land prices are placing upward pressure on the affordability of housing types. This has resulted in a shift towards more multi-family housing options, as apartments and townhouses are now the dominant housing type under construction in the Vancouver CMA.