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Waterloo is among the fastest growing communities in Canada

For the third consecutive year, Statistics Canada has revealed that Waterloo Region was one of Canada's two fastest growing communities in 2020.

Two weeks ago, Statistics Canada released its annual report on Canada’s population growth. For the third straight year, Waterloo Region was one of the two fastest growing communities in Canada. Last year, we topped the list.

Canada’s top five fastest growing communities in 2020 include:

  1. Oshawa, Ontario
  2. Waterloo Region, Ontario (listed as Kitchener-Cambridge-Waterloo)
  3. Halifax, Nova Scotia
  4. Kelowna, British Columbia
  5. Calgary, Alberta

What’s behind Waterloo’s sustained population growth?

As with last year, there are several factors driving Waterloo’s growth: the economy is booming, we’re home to three world-class post-secondary institutions and as a lower-cost option – with other benefits that are becoming apparent throughout the COVID-19 pandemic – the community is pulling people away from high-cost jurisdictions.

While the pandemic put a hold on some development last year, the multi-billion dollar development boom continues in Waterloo, with plans to develop a new transit hub simplifying connections to Toronto in the design phase. Google is still planning to expand, its new offices are under construction, and the startling growth of companies like ApplyBoard, Faire and Arctic Wolf is drawing more attention from top talent.

Speaking of talent, we’re also home to three major post-secondary institutions – the University of Waterloo, Wilfrid Laurier University and Conestoga College – and they continue to grow each year. The University of Waterloo, in particular, is a driver of talent attraction as Canada’s #1 school for computer science, engineering and mathematics.

Finally, the arrival of many new migrants and immigrants has helped drive local population growth. The remote work lifestyle that has found new life during the COVID-19 pandemic has given young couples who were priced out of real estate in larger centres the option of looking further afield. While immigration is more of a challenge during the pandemic, companies like Odyssey Interactive continue to lean on Canada’s unique work visa programs to attract the world’s top talent to Waterloo.

Top 15 fastest growing communities on the list:

  1. Oshawa, Ontario
  2. Waterloo, Ontario
  3. Halifax, Nova Scotia
  4. Kelowna, British Columbia
  5. Calgary, Alberta
  6. Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
  7. Moncton, New Brunswick
  8. Edmonton, Alberta
  9. Barrie, Ontario
  10. Belleville, Ontario
  11. Ottawa-Gatineau, Ontario
  12. London, Ontario
  13. Lethbridge, Alberta
  14. Trois-Rivières, Quebec
  15. Guelph, Ontario
Learn more about Waterloo