Here's some food-for-thought. I went into the CMA and CA table to tease out Alberta's trends as a whole:
View attachment 379849
Details of all CMAs and CAs:
View attachment 379850
A few trends I noticed:
Putting some of those numbers into context:
- I doubt most people would find this surprising on this forum, but growth is overwhelming concentrated in Calgary and Edmonton areas. 95% of total growth was near the big cities.
- Lethbridge grew by 5.5% or about 6,500 people. Red Deer hardly grew at all (0.4%, or ~400 people)
- Of the smaller centres (CAs), most were growing below the Alberta average or shrinking with some exceptions noted above:
- Canmore (14.3%, ~2,000 people) - resort and retirement town
- Sylvan Lake (7.9%, ~1,200 people) - resort and retirement town
- High River (5.4%, ~730 people) - notably near Calgary
- Okotoks (4.8%, ~1,200 people) - notably near Calgary
- Overall rural Alberta's trend of bucking the rural decline that occurs every other rural area in the country is over, in a big way.
Overall, the rural v. large urban divide is growing incredibly stark - Alberta has finally caught onto the rural decline trend of all the other provinces this census. For decades our small towns kept growing, despite most other small towns declining - in many cases this solely the result of the random oil and gas projects spread all over the place (spreading jobs and money with them). This is over, with declines beginning across the board. As growth is so concentrated, even if rural areas don't lose much people, they will fall further and further behind proportionally.
- The average provincial election riding has about 45,000 - 50,000 people. By this logic, Calgary and Edmonton will see 3 - 4 more seats eventually from the past 5 years of growth alone.
- The average federal election riding has about 90,000 - 110,000 people. By this logic Calgary and Edmonton will see 1 - 2 more seats eventually.
While there's exceptions (resort and retirement towns, other single industry towns etc.), I don't see an economic driver that would reverse this trend short of another oil boom of the type that spreads money and jobs everywhere again. Even if all the forecasts about trends in remote working end up coming true, this growth is overwhelmingly likely to concentrated into the suburban areas of the large cities or to a lesser absolute extent in wealthier, resort communities.
I wouldn't expect that big a change provincially, to be honest.At the federal level all 3 of the new Alberta seats will be in Edmonton or Calgary, but the effect on national politics is going to be pretty much zero.
Provincial ridings will be likely redistributed for the 2027 election. 4 more urban seats could have a pretty big impact. Calgary+Edmonton are currently 46/87 seats so the NDP pretty much has to run the table in the big cities to get to a majority. If that goes to 50/87, the NDP can lose 8 suburban ridings in Calgary, and still win a majority assuming they sweep Edmonton and hold their current Lethbridge + St Albert seats.
There are two different outlooks depending on whether you're the glass half empty or glass half full type. For the half glass empty types, it's not good to see a downward trend, pure and simple, the numbers are down. For the half glass full types, Calgary has had the highest unemployment rate of the major cities, for what 7 straight years now? Still the city continues to be a strong draw for immigrants who usually go where the jobs are. Not only that but the drop from 21K to 17K is not a huge drop all considered. With the economy turning around we could easily see the number bounce back, and most likely will.Immigration to the Calgary metro area continuing its downward trend despite a record year for immigration to Canada in 2021. Immigrants by year:
Source: Government of Canada, Open Data:
Permanent Residents – Monthly IRCC Updates - Canada - Admissions of Permanent Residents by Province/Territory and Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) of Intended Destination
There are two different outlooks depending on whether you're the glass half empty or glass half full type. For the half glass empty types, it's not good to see a downward trend, pure and simple, the numbers are down. For the half glass full types, Calgary has had the highest unemployment rate of the major cities, for what 7 straight years now? Still the city continues to be a strong draw for immigrants who usually go where the jobs are. Not only that but the drop from 21K to 17K is not a huge drop all considered. With the economy turning around we could easily see the number bounce back, and most likely will.
Other cities like Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver have had much better numbers, but one still needs to look at the big picture. For example, not shown is the numbers for where the immigrants ultimately end up living. Toronto's CMA for example would actually be losing population, and a fair bit actually if not for the high immigration numbers. Montreal who had 40K arrive there in 2021 actually lost 25K in population overall.
Maybe there is a report or some numbers that show how long the arrived immigrants stay in their city, and shed some more light on what's happening?
Does anyone know if this tool (or a similar one) can be used to show employment? As in, number of jobs in a certain dissemination area? Or, does StatsCan even track employment data geographically beyond larger regions like Provincial boundaries?The Census Program Data Viewer (CPDV) is an advanced web-based data visualization tool that will make statistical information more interpretable by presenting key indicators in a statistical dashboard. The CPDV makes it easy to find many places in Canada, see them on a map, and get basic...www12.statcan.gc.ca
Census Program Data Viewer
Click on Geographic Level. Select Dissemination Area from the menu. There are a few steps to go through. It's a bit clunky to use. I recommend searching by postal code rather than city.
I suspect that data is held behind the Statscan paywall - not all of their data is free.Does anyone know if this tool (or a similar one) can be used to show employment? As in, number of jobs in a certain dissemination area? Or, does StatsCan even track employment data geographically beyond larger regions like Provincial boundaries?
Yep, Marda Loop is on the border between the 1910s boom that died with WWI and the 1940s/50s boom that filled out the rest of the area. This historical transition makes it an eclectic collection of housing eras that reduces the pressure for new builds to 'conform with the character'. In the north that same transition area is the area between 16th and 32 ave N which is also a mix a 1910s, 1940s, and 1950s. In the west it's the Killarney area.Hopefully some of the neighborhoods in the North & NW will follow suit. Banff Trail, Capitol Hill, Mount Pleasant, Tuxedo, etc., are all well positioned to add pretty significant density over the decades