Winnipeg metropolitan population growth slows during pandemic: Statistics Canada


New figures from Statistics Canada show Winnipeg’s population growth has slowed since the pandemic began, but an expert says the trend isn’t specific to the city.

For 2021, the population of the census metropolitan area of ​​Winnipeg was 852,778, which is up slightly from 851,211 in 2020.

This represents only 1,567 more people living in the region from July 1, 2020 to July 1, 2021.

Lori Wilkinson, who is a professor in the Department of Sociology and Criminology at the University of Manitoba, said several major cities, including Winnipeg, have struggled with population growth during the pandemic and even before COVID-19 hit. .

“There are actually four components to population growth. There are births, there are deaths, migration into the country and migration out of the country,” Wilkinson said.

“As a nation, we are getting older and having fewer babies.”

Wilkinson said in 2019 Canada had the lowest growth rate ever.

“So if we look at Winnipeg specifically, its age structure, we’re a bit older than other metropolitan areas. So our average age is 38.6.”

Wilkinson points out that while growth slowed in the Winnipeg area even before the pandemic, with just over 35,000 people since 2017, it has grown at a steady pace over the past 20 years.

“Our growth rate between 2001 and 2021 is 23%, which is a bit behind some other centers, but not all,” she said.

Wilkinson said Winnipeg trailed Toronto with a 34% growth rate, while places like Montreal and Hamilton had growth rates of 20% and 17.9% respectively over the same period.

Tyler Markowsky, a city economist, said while growth has fallen recently, he doesn’t expect it to continue.

“We continue to monitor demographic, national and local trends, and will update the Board on how we expect these trends to impact growth in Winnipeg,” Markowsky said in a written statement to CTV News.

“While it is too early to predict when this might happen, we expect population growth trends in Winnipeg to return to pre-pandemic levels.”

Wilkinson said if the city wants to try and get growth back to a pre-pandemic level, it needs to highlight Winnipeg’s positives.

“I’ve lived in many cities in Canada and I think Winnipeg is the most underrated city ever…I don’t think we’re proud enough to advertise that. I think Winnipeg is Canada’s best kept secret. And perhaps as a province and as a municipality we need to celebrate our accomplishments and what you can do here in a much more open way than we did.”