Here we grow again.
New estimates from BC Stats show that Langley Township’s population grew 3.34 per cent last year, from 118,464 to 122,415 residents.
That places the Township fourth among B.C.’s fastest growing municipalities behind Langford, which topped the list with a 6.72 per cent rise in population, Mission (3.90 per cent), and Maple Ridge (3.48 per cent).
Langley outpaced Surrey, which rounded out the top five with a 3.16 per cent rise in population.
Courtenay, Squamish, Colwood, Comox, and Nanaimo round out the top 10 municipalities (5,000-plus) ranked by population growth (percentage-wise) over the course of 2016.
Langley Township Mayor Jack Froese said the 3.34 per cent increase is on pace with the municipality’s projections.
“We’re really on target with the urban areas that the Township of Langley has, that’s approved in the Metro Vancouver Plan that’s open for development,” Froese said.
“You can see why people are moving here; there are new developments going (up) all the time and that’s contributing to that three per cent growth.”
Froese added, “We’re going to see that for… the next several years, about a three per cent growth”
But does the Township have the infrastructure in place to handle this influx of new residents?
“It’s more of a challenge than a concern,” Froese said.
“Certainly when there’s growth there’s challenges. As the developments come in we really are reliant on the developers to provide the infrastructure.”
Froese flipped the narrative.
“If you see a three per cent decrease in population, what sort of challenges would the Township be facing then? So is there a perfect sweet spot of growth? I don’t know if there is anyone who actually knows it.”
Three per cent growth has been projected as “an acceptable rate,” Froese noted.
“There’s always going to be a bit of transition when you do have some growth, because of the roads and schools that have to be built,” he said. “They are being built. Never fast enough, but they are being built.”
B.C.’s population was estimated at 4,773,345 as of Oct. 1, 2016, growing by 21,733 people in the third quarter of 2016.
That’s up 0.5 per cent from July 1, 2016, according to Stats BC, which notes this is the largest third quarter growth recorded since 2009.