December 2019 - January 2020 Best Cities for Work in B.C.

With a mission to inform, empower, celebrate and advocate for British Columbia's current and aspiring business leaders, BCBusiness go behind the headlines and bring readers face to face with the key issues and people driving business in B.C.

Issue link: http://digital.canadawide.com/i/1184822

Contents of this Issue


Page 29 of 71

the Okanagan are seeing their populations grow. For our sixth annual Best Cities for Work sur- vey, we've used 10 indicators, gathered with help from research partner Environics Analytics, to evaluate the prospects for B.C.'s largest munici- palities. (For details, see page 33.) Falling under three comparably weighted categories—income, household expenses and lifestyle, and municipal economic performance—these numbers reveal much about a community's attractiveness as a place to work. T H E L E A D E R S For the second year in a row, the Sea-to-Sky duo of Squamish and Whistler take the first and second spots, respectively, with the Township of Langley edging the District of North Van- couver to clinch No. 3. Driven by high house- hold incomes, double-digit population growth and lofty spending on recreational opportuni- ties, these top three cities have remained eco- nomically resilient despite their relatively high costs of living. In the case of Squamish, a hot residential construction market punctuates its first-place standing, with housing starts seeing nearly 50 percent more activity than in the next leading city on the list. "There's a lot of multiplier effects out of con- struction," says Tsur Somerville, associate profes- sor at UBC Sauder School of Business and senior fellow with the university's Centre for Urban Eco- nomics and Real Estate. "It has a pretty high local factor—a lot of labour and a lot of the materials are local." New homes spur local spending on house- hold goods, too, Somerville notes. 30 BCBUSINESS DECEMBER/JANUARY 2020 2020 RANK 2019 RANK COMMUNITY AVERAGE HOUSEHOLD INCOME (10% WEIGHT) AVERAGE HOUSEHOLD INCOME UNDER 35 (10%) SQUAMISH $120,897 $109,554 WHISTLER $137,250 $108,773 TOWNSHIP OF LANGLEY $125,186 $117,611 DISTRICT OF NORTH VANCOUVER $167,970 $130,736 KELOWNA $106,994 $87,596 FORT ST. JOHN $138,185 $131,656 SALMON ARM $97,520 $82,145 NANAIMO $88,057 $78,284 PRINCE RUPERT $104,141 $91,582 COURTENAY $81,943 $71,337 CITY OF NORTH VANCOUVER $102,675 $88,873 MAPLE RIDGE $115,542 $106,261 COQUITLAM $108,992 $89,724 SIDNEY $90,721 $99,495 PARKSVILLE $79,224 $71,376 CHILLIWACK $96,584 $88,424 DELTA $130,204 $117,571 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 12 1 2 4 3 5 9 19 15 6 21 8 10 11 22 13 25 16 • Our ranking only includes cities of 10,000 or more permanent residents. • We excluded bedroom com- munities such as Lake Country, Sooke and West Vancouver, which may offer a high quality of life but have relatively small job markets. • Langley and North Vancouver are represented on the ranking by both their city and district municipalities. • Despite using the term "city" throughout, our annual list is technically a ranking of munici- palities, as legally defined by the B.C. Local Government Act. • We work with research partner Environics Analytics because we believe it has the best data available–but even the best data has its limitations. The unemployment rates come from Statcan's September 2019 Labour Force Survey, a three-month moving average that only calculates rates for B.C.'s eight economic regions and four census metropolitan areas. Similarly, housing starts figures are provided by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp.'s monthly Starts and Comple- tions Survey, and only reflect the year-to-date figures col- lected to the end of September 2019. As such, those indicators won't show economic trends over the final quarter of 2019. Just so you know:

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of BCBusiness - December 2019 - January 2020 Best Cities for Work in B.C.