The City of Penticton says the largest group of people moving to the South Okanagan community hail from B.C.’s Lower Mainland.
In a press release issued on Thursday, the city says its latest data from the past 15 months reveals not only that, but why they’re moving inland as well.
And the reason is: Work.
“First of all, we would like to extend a warm welcome to all of our newest residents,” said Penticton’s mayor, Julius Bloomfield.
According to the mayor, the city’s ‘Welcome Home’ initiative allows them to connect with their new residents while also learning more about them.
“This will help us understand how the city is growing and the ways we need to adapt to address their needs,” said Bloomfield.
Since July 1, 2022, newcomers have been invited to complete a survey. To date, 150 people representing 384 residents have filled out the form.
“The responses show that 81 people (54 per cent) who filled out application forms to receive the Welcome Home packs moved for employment reasons, such as to start a job or to take over/start a business,” said the city.
Of that working group, 13 per cent came to work remotely while more than half (55 per cent) indicated that moving closer to friends and family was an attraction. Also, 11 households (7 per cent) came because the respondent’s partner had secured a job in Penticton.
The next largest group, at 25 per cent (38 households), are retirees. They mostly moved from the Lower Mainland (39.5 per cent) and Northern / Interior (23.7 per cent) with notable interprovincial migration from Ontario (13.2 per cent) and Manitoba (10.5 per cent).
The city said the survey not only revealed the above stats, but also if they immigrated to Canada in the last five years, with 16 per cent indicating they had relocated from elsewhere. The Philippines, India and Mexico topped the list.
Regarding ages, 43 per cent are between 19 and 44, while 23.5 per cent are in the 45-64 category. Children, up to age 18, are at 22 per cent.
The city added that the most reasons why people moved to Penticton were climate (21 per cent), access to nature (19 per cent) and proximity to family and friends (15 per cent).
“The Welcome Home campaign reflects the diversity that we’re seeing in our housing needs assessment,” said Blake Laven, Penticton’s director of development services. “As we continue to grow, we’re going to welcome more skilled workers, students, professionals and parents. This data reinforces the need to continue to provide a mix of housing types to meet the needs of new and old residents.”
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