The city of Rossland’s population continues to grow while every other community and rural electoral area in the Kootenay Boundary region experiences a decrease.
According to figures recently released by BC Stats in the 2013 Sub-Provincial Population Estimates, the Golden City increased its population by .1 per cent.
Although the increase translated into a gain of only two people (and you know who you are), the city was the only Kootenay-Boundary community that saw any increase over last year, rising from 3,588 people to 3,590.
The city is famed for its lifestyle and continues to draw people into the fold, said Mayor Greg Granstrom, even during tough economic times that effectively siphon people off nearby communities.
He also credited a concerted decision by the city to keep taxes as low as possible, and the vision to upgrade city amenities (Columbia-Washington project).
“So it makes it a place we all like to call home,” he said.
In 2012 Rossland’s population rose .7 per cent (26 people).
Of all provincial regions the Kootenay-Boundary saw the strongest rate of decline (2.1 per cent) in 2013, with a drop in population of 645 persons.
Trail accounted for most of the decline, dropping 3.1 per cent to 7,307, a decrease of 237 people. Last year the Silver City decreased 1.9 per cent and has dropped almost 400 people since 2011 (7,693).
The rural areas of Kootenay-Boundary fell 3.3 per cent (327 people) to 9,498 people. Warfield decreased 1.8 per cent to 1,672 people, a drop of 30 per cent.
Across the Columbia River valley, Montrose dipped .4 per cent to 1,032 (four person decrease), and Fruitvale lost five people in 2013, a .2 per cent drop to 2,036.
In the Boundary region, Grand Forks bled a little with a decrease of 36 people, a .9 per cent drop to 4,026. The City of Greenwood saw six fewer people in 2013, a .9 per cent drop to 699. Midway lost two people in 2013 to record a .3 per cent drop to 663 people.
On an annual basis, BC Stats produces sub-provincial population estimates using the generalized estimation system (GES). This regression model uses symptomatic indicators such as health client registry and residential hydro hook-ups to gauge population growth from one year to the next. These estimates assist in local and provincial government planning processes.
In the other West Kootenay region, the Regional District of Central Kootenay also declined, but by only .5 per cent, or 321 people.
Nearby Castlegar dropped by 98 people, or 1.2 per cent in 2013 to 7,762 people. Nelson rose slightly, 24 people, to 9,877, or .2 per cent. Creston fell 4.8 per cent to 5,169 in 2013, a drop of 261 people.
The other mountain cities of Golden and Revelstoke both dropped in population, .9 per cent and .1 per cent respectively. Revelstoke lost six people to come in 2013 at 7,241, while Golden fell to 3,691 (35 person drop).
In the East Kootenay, Cranbrook fell one per cent to 19,245 (198 people), while Kimberley slide by 100 people to 6,406 (1.5 per cent drop). Fernie came in at 4,538, down 1.2 per cent in 2013, or 56 people.
Across the province, Peace River showed the highest regional growth in 2013 (2.1 per cent) with a boost in population of 1,280 persons.
In terms of actual number of people, Greater Vancouver, the most common destination of choice for immigrants landing in B.C., saw the largest increase in population (34,702 persons) in 2013.
Surrey attracted more newcomers than any other municipality between July 1, 2012 and June 30, 2013 (11,116 persons or 2.3 per cent).
Of the 10 largest (over 100,000 people) municipalities in the province, Kelowna, Saanich and Delta showed a decline of 0.2 per cent, 0.4 per cent and 0.1 per cent, respectively.
Amid municipalities with greater than 5,000 people, Creston and Port Alberni reported the fastest rates of decline (4.8 per cent and 3.3 per cent, respectively).
The coverage of B.C.’s geographies using GES focuses on 189 areas comprised of 162 municipalities and 27 unique aggregations of unincorporated areas.
Most of the province’s residents (almost nine in every 10 persons) live in municipalities.