Guelph out­paced na­tional growth rate, new cen­sus data shows

The Hamilton Spectator - - CANADA & WORLD - THE CANA­DIAN PRESS

OTTAWA — New cen­sus data shows the pop­u­la­tion of the metropoli­tan area of Guelph out­paced the na­tional growth rate over the last five years.

Statis­tics Canada re­leased the first batch of num­bers from the 2016 cen­sus on Wed­nes­day and the pop­u­la­tion of what the gov­ern­ment agency refers to as the cen­sus metropoli­tan area of Guelph in­creased by 7.7 per cent since the last cen­sus in 2011.

The area’s growth rate was above the na­tional growth rate of five per cent, while the pop­u­la­tion of On­tario in­creased by 4.6 per cent.

Cen­sus metropoli­tan ar­eas do not con­form to es­tab­lished mu­nic­i­pal bound­aries. Statis­tics Canada de­fines them as a metropoli­tan area with a pop­u­la­tion of at least 100,000, where the ur­ban core of that area has at least 50,000 peo­ple. Com­mut­ing pat­terns and other fac­tors are used in de­ter­min­ing the cen­sus metropoli­tan ar­eas. Look­ing at metropoli­tan ar­eas this way takes in to account the grow­ing im­pact of sub­ur­ban ar­eas on Canada’s largest ci­ties.

When the 2016 cen­sus was taken last May 10, the pop­u­la­tion of the cen­sus metropoli­tan area of Guelph was 151,984, com­pared with 141,097 from the 2011 cen­sus. The pop­u­la­tion of the ac­tual city of Guelph was 131,794, up from 121,688 in 2011.

The cen­sus in­di­cated that Guelph ranked No. 28 among the coun­try’s 35 cen­sus metropoli­tan ar­eas.

Canada’s pop­u­la­tion on cen­sus day was 35,151,728, Statis­tics Canada re­ported.

The na­tional cen­sus is con­ducted ev­ery five years. The in­for­ma­tion pub­lished Wed­nes­day is the first of sev­eral re­leases of data to come from Statis­tics Canada over the next year that will even­tu­ally paint a de­tailed pic­ture of the coun­try, right down to the lo­cal level — in­clud­ing age break­downs of the pop­u­la­tion, fam­ily makeup, lan­guages spo­ken, im­mi­gra­tion and eth­nic ori­gin, the level of ed­u­ca­tion at­tained and in­come earned.

Fu­ture cen­sus re­leases will give more in­sight to ex­plain the rea­sons be­hind the pop­u­la­tion changes — whether it’s re­lated to changes in birth and death rates, im­mi­gra­tion or in­ter­provin­cial mi­gra­tion.

At the pro­vin­cial level, pop­u­la­tion lev­els in Al­berta saw the high­est in­crease at 11.6 per cent, fol­lowed by Saskatchewan (6.3 per cent) and Man­i­toba (5.8 per cent).

Growth in New Brunswick shrank by 0.5 per cent — the first time since 2006 a prov­ince has re­ported a neg­a­tive growth rate.

Bri­tish Columbia’s pop­u­la­tion lev­els in­creased by 5.6 per cent, com­pared with On­tario (4.6 per cent), Que­bec (3.3 per cent), Prince Ed­ward Is­land (1.9 per cent), New­found­land and Labrador (1.0 per cent) and Nova Sco­tia (0.2 per cent). Among the north­ern ter­ri­to­ries, the pop­u­la­tion grew by 12.7 per cent in the North­west Ter­ri­to­ries, 5.8 per cent in the Nu­navut and 0.8 per cent in Yukon.

On­tario is still the coun­try’s most pop­u­lous prov­ince, with a pop­u­la­tion of 13,448,494.

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