The Abbotsford-Mission area has one of the slowest growth rates among Canadian census metropolitan areas (CMAs), according to Statistics Canada estimates.
Abbotsford-Mission gained an estimated 478 people between July 1, 2013, and June 30, 2014, to bring the area’s population to an estimated 178,967, according to the agency.
With a year-over-year increase of just 0.3 per cent, Abbotsford-Mission’s growth rate was slower than all but six other Canadian CMAs. Those slow-growing cities were all located in Ontario or Quebec, with the exception of Saint John, N.B., which, with a population decrease of 0.5 per cent, saw the most people leave town.
Of nine Western Canadian CMAs, only Abbotsford-Mission and Victoria – which also had an estimated population increase of 0.3 per cent – had growth rates below one per cent.
The four years prior, the area had grown at an average rate of 0.8 per cent. At an average of 1.4 per cent, population growth in CMAs outpaced growth elsewhere in Canada, where the increase was just 0.4 per cent. Much of the gap, according to Statistics Canada, is because immigrants are choosing to live in larger cities.
The figures also showed that Abbotsford-Mission had a higher proportion of residents 14 years of age and younger (18.2 per cent) than any other CMA in Canada.