The City of Selkirk cracked Maclean’s magazine’s Top 100 list of fastest growing communities in Canada, a reality that’s not lost on Mayor Larry Johannson.
“It’s nice to see Selkirk on that list, I’m proud of that, but it’s something that the people who live here know without having to see a list,” Johannson said.
“We see the new homes that are going up, we see new businesses opening their doors, we see all the businesses that are busier, and we’re watching the largest subdivision in decades in Vaughan Avenue West taking shape. The proof is right here in front of us, and it’s a great time to be in Selkirk.”
Growing fast, but smart
In Maclean’s Best Communities in Canada issue (Aug. 8, 2019) it ranked Selkirk at No. 90 in the Fastest Growing Communities category, with a population of 11,129 and an annualized five-year growth rate of 1.4 per cent.
Chief Administrative Officer Duane Nicol said the vision of Selkirk’s Strategic Plan is to build a vibrant regional hub for commerce, culture and recreation, and provide the best opportunities an urban centre can offer.
But Nicol will be among the first to point out that growth can’t be just for growth’s sake, and by following its Strategic Plan, Selkirk’s growth is done in an intentional way.
“Creating a vibrant community doesn’t just happen. The city has a plan in place for sustainable growth, and that type of development leads us towards a more sustainable urban form. The city has been working hard over the last few years to make this growth happen in a smart way,” Nicol said.
“We’re getting national recognition for the success that we’ve been seeing on the ground. It’s great that Maclean’s has recognized all the fantastic work that’s happening in Selkirk. The city is making strategic investments into infrastructure both new and renewed. These will support growth well into the future. Investors and developers now see Selkirk as a stable and profitable place to invest their money.”
A community is more than just business
Nicol said that beyond public and private sector investment, local groups have played a key role in making Selkirk an attractive place for new residents and enterprise.
“The city is more than roads and pipes. There are many groups and individuals working hard at growing the cultural and social infrastructure that are necessary to make Selkirk a vibrant community. From Communities in Bloom, to Holiday Alley, from Red River North Tourism to the Selikrk-Red River Metis local, community leaders are coming together to add art, culture, and new energy to our community,” said Nicol.
Mayor Johannson agrees that Selkirk’s exciting growth is the result of all parts of the community working together.
“They are leveraging and activating our people and our places to make Selkirk an even more desirable place to live, work and play. There is a new momentum in Selkirk – and it’s a result of a lot of people leaning in and working hard,” said Johannson.