The 2019 census results have been finalized and the population of Lethbridge is now officially more than 100,000 people.
The exact number announced Monday is 101,482, which is an increase of 1,713 people — or 1.72 per cent — since the 2018 census. The census results mean that Lethbridge is the third-most populous city in Alberta, surpassing Red Deer by 480 people.
Mayor Chris Spearman said city council had known for a while the milestone had been reached, but they were waiting for the results to be finalized before announcing the news.
“It’s exciting that we continue to grow at a regular pace,” said Spearman. “We’re seeing Lethbridge grow at 1.5 to two per cent a year, on a regular basis, and I think that provides a lot of confidence to potential investors and businesses that the city continues to grow.”
“From our point of view as a municipality, it’s tremendous that we can manage the infrastructure to support the growth.”
The biggest jump was seen in west Lethbridge, where the population jumped 2.35 per cent to 40,898.
According to census information, the communities that saw the biggest increases were Copperwood, Garry Station, BlackWolf, Fairmont, Crossings and Country Meadows.
The data also revealed that the average Lethbridge resident is 38.4 years old.
Spearman said he believes the growth will continue.
“I would expect it to continue to grow at an even pace. The types of industry and employment that we have here… we don’t have the boom and bust of the oil and gas sector, so our population doesn’t fluctuate like many cities do in Alberta,” said Spearman.
The city says more than 40 per cent of census surveys were completed online during the month of April, with the remainder being completed in person by door-to-door census takers.