Sunshine Coast Economic Development - British Columbia, Canada

People & Employment

People & Employment

Demographics/Census Profile

The Sunshine Coast has experienced steady growth in population, jumping by 4.7% between 2011 and 2016. The population of the Town of Gibsons grew 3.8% during the same period; the District of Sechelt grew by 10%. Challenged by its extremely small land base and diminishing amount of available building sites, Gibsons is committed to SmartGrowth principles of densification. Four recently-announced major residential developments will be built and occupied by the next census. As shown in the table below, other communities enjoy a larger land base, and correspondingly lower population density.

Although anecdotal evidence indicates a growing number of young entrepreneurs are finding the Coast an excellent base for building a business and growing a family, the age demographic still tends to skew towards the upper levels of the spectrum. As of the 2016 Canada Census, the median age on the Sunshine Coast was 51.6; significantly higher than the Provincial median of 41.9 years. The large population over 65 years (44 percent) is due to the attractiveness of the Sunshine Coast for retirees, availability of quality medical care, potential for aging in place, and proximity to Vancouver’s amenities.

2016 Census Population Population Area (km2) Pop. Density/km2
Town of Gibsons 4,605 4.29 1.073.42
District of Sechelt 10,216 39.02 261.80
Sechelt Indian Government District 692 11.05 62.62
Pender Harbour (SCRD Area A) 2,624 1,901.61 1.38
Halfmoon Bay (SCRD Area B) 2,726 1,271.54  2.14
Roberts Creek (SCRD Area D) 3,421 143.64 23.82
Elphinstone (SCRD Area E) 3,664 21.60 169.63
West Howe Sound (SCRD Area F) 2,043 381.07 5.36
Total Gibsons Region (+D, E & F) 10,312 406.96 25.34
Total Sechelt Region (+B & SIGD) 13,634 1,321.61 10.32
Total Sunshine Coast 29,991 3,773.79 7.95


2016 Census Median Age
Town of Gibsons 54.8
District of Sechelt 56.6
Sechelt Indian Government District 46.6
Pender Harbour (Area A) 60.5
Halfmoon Bay (Area B) 55.0
Roberts Creek (Area D) 50.7
Elphinstone (Area E) 50.6
West Howe Sound (Area F) 54.5
Total Sunshine Coast 53.7


Sunshine Coast Regional Economic Development Organization

District of Sechelt Sechelt Indian Government District SCRD   Gibsons


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