New census data shows the population of the metropolitan area of Saskatoon outpaced the national growth rate over the last five years.
Statistics Canada released the first batch of numbers from the 2016 census on Wednesday and the population of what the government agency refers to as the census metropolitan area of Saskatoon increased by 12.5 per cent since the last census in 2011.
WATCH: Here are the main takeaways from Canada’s 2016 census
That was the third-fastest growth rate among census metropolitan areas in Canada, trailing Calgary (14.6 per cent) and Edmonton (13.9 per cent).
The area’s growth rate was above the national growth rate of 5.0 per cent, while the population of Saskatchewan increased by 6.3 per cent.
Census metropolitan areas do not conform to established municipal boundaries. Statistics Canada defines them as a metropolitan area with a population of at least 100,000, where the urban core of that area has at least 50,000 people.
Commuting patterns and other factors are used in determining these census metropolitan areas. Looking at metropolitan areas this way takes in to account the growing impact of suburban areas on Canada’s largest cities.
When the 2016 census was taken last May 10, the population of the census metropolitan area of Saskatoon was 295,095, compared with 262,215 from the 2011 census.
The population of the actual city of Saskatoon was 246,376, up from 222,246 in 2011.
The census indicated that Saskatoon ranked No. 17 among the country’s 35 census metropolitan areas.
Canada’s population on census day was 35,151,728, Statistics Canada reported.
The national census is conducted every five years. The information published Wednesday is the first of several releases of data to come from Statistics Canada over the next year that will eventually paint a detailed picture of the country, right down to the local level – including age breakdowns of the population, family makeup, languages spoken, immigration and ethnic origin, the level of education attained and income earned.
Future census releases will give more insight to explain the reasons behind the population changes – whether it’s related mostly to changes in birth and death rates, immigration or interprovincial migration.
At the provincial level, population levels in Alberta saw the highest increase at 11.6 per cent, followed by Saskatchewan (6.3 per cent) and Manitoba (5.8 per cent).
With files from Global News