North Saanich leads Saanich Peninsula communities in population growth at 8.8% – Vancouver Island Free Daily


Recently released census figures show that population growth on the Saanich Peninsula has largely not matched growth figures for Greater Victoria.

While the census metropolitan area (CMA) of Victoria grew by 8% to 397,237 people in 2021 compared to 2016, two of the three municipalities on the Saanich Peninsula experienced lower growth, the growth rate of 8.8% of North Saanich being the main exception.

Central Saanich — the region’s largest municipality by population and land area at 41.2 square kilometers — grew 3.4% to 17,385.

Sidney – the most “urban” community in the region with a population density of nearly 2,413 people per square kilometer – grew 5.5% to 12,318 people in 2021. North Saanich – the second largest municipality of the region with 37.16 square kilometers but the least dense with 329.2 people per square kilometer — increased by 8.8% to reach 12,235 people.

Compared to the previous census period, Sidney remains on a growth path, growing 4.4% in 2016 over 2011. Central Saanich’s population growth appears to be slowing, with the municipality growing 5.5% in 2016. North Saanich, meanwhile, was up just 1.4% in 2016.

These numbers appear in the context of the three communities reviewing their respective official community plans outlining future land uses. Sidney has begun drafting its document, Central Saanich is currently seeking public comment on its draft, and North Saanich remains uncertain about the future direction of the review.

North Saanich Mayor Geoff Orr said the process was hanging by a ‘thread’ amid controversies around the housing issue, perhaps the most crucial issue in any review, and the latest figures of the North Saanich census promise to offer both sides of the debate. ammunition.

For proponents of more development, a population growth rate of 8.8% could further underscore the need for more housing. For opponents of more development, a population growth rate of 8.8% could be further evidence that the community is already growing too fast.


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wolfgang.depner@peninsulanewsreview.com

Saanich Peninsula Census

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