Abbotsford’s population now sits at 133,497, a 7.4 per cent increase from its 2006 population of 124,258.
Statistics Canada released the first morsels of information – population and private dwellings – from the 2011 census on Wednesday.
According to the release, the District of Mission’s population increased by 5.6 per cent to 36,426 from the 2006 figure of 34,505.
The combined Abbotsford/Mission CMA (census metropolitan area) population rose seven per cent to 170,191 from the 2006 figure of 159,020 while the Fraser Valley Regional District experienced an eight per cent increase 277,593 from 257,031.
“If we compare it to the national average, the City of Abbotsford actually grew faster than the national average and the provincial average as well. Whereas Mission also grew, albeit at a slower pace,” said Peter Laing, communications manager for the western region of Statistics Canada.
Canada’s overall population rose 5.9 per cent, from 31,612,897 in 2006 to 33,476,688 in 2011, while B.C. rose seven per cent to 4,400,057 from 4,113487.
While Abbotsford experienced above average growth, it was not the fastest growing city in the province.
“For city’s with a population of 5,000 or more, it’s the city of Langford, which is in the Victoria CMA, that posted a 30.1 per cent increase,” said Laing.
He said the census information is vital to local communities to properly plan for future needs.
“This data will be used for municipal planners to create a profile …. to allow service delivery to be delivered accordingly.”
Those services include identifying whether there are enough police or fire services in the area as well as the number of schools or even where to focus road work. The census information also supplies a framework to determine the number of seats in parliament and the amount of transfer payments made to the provinces, through to the municipalities.
Statistics Canada also released private dwelling numbers.
There are 49,917 private dwelling in Abbotsford and 13,820 in Mission. The Fraser Valley Regional District has a total of 110,940 private dwellings.