"The Hub of the Okanagan" Continues to Grow Above the National Average Rate
To residents of Kelowna, it is no secret how much the city has grown and changed over the years. From 2006 to 2011, Kelowna (and area) grew by 10.8%. This placed it 4th in Canada for population growth in metropolitan areas after Calgary, Edmonton and Saskatoon.
According to the City of Kelowna's Official Community Plan, Kelowna is projected to grow an average of 1.51% annually over the course of the 20 years that the plan encompasses. While this would make the estimated population for 2013 to be 120,890, an official at the city said that with yearly fluctuations a closer estimate is 119,445. This represents growth above the national average of 1.2%.
When asked about Kelowna's tremendous growth City Councillor Luke Stack called Kelowna the “Hub of the Okanagan”, saying that those who get a taste of the city are often the ones who end up moving here.
“Kelowna continues to experience above average growth because it is a destination city in Canada. Canadians typically discover Kelowna on a summer vacation. Once they see the natural beauty of the Okanagan Lake and valley; the vineyards and orchards they short list the City as a place they would love to live one day. Further investigation finds an expanding international airport, a well established University (UBC), the Kelowna General hospital which is the hub of regional healthcare in the Interior of BC.
“Finally, The City provides a full complement of modern shops and services, theatres and restaurants. The economic sector is growing, particularly in the high-tech sector. There is a very vibrant small business entrepreneurial spirit in the region.”
Stack added that those reasons influenced his decision to move here with his family in 1981 and it was “an excellent decision”.