By Jonas Gagnon
Fort St. James has seen significant growth over the last few years.
Emily Colombo, the Economic Development Officer for the region, touts the increased numbers as a positive for the region.
“I’m really excited about the increase,” said Colombo. “ Some people were skeptical of the accuracy of the 2006 numbers, but I’m very happy to see them bouncing back. This is a good indicator of the strength of our local economy’s ability to provide employment for people. Also our high quality of life and recreational opportunities attract a lot of people to the area.”
This puts Fort St. James as the second fastest growing community in B.C.
As a result Fort St. James has seen an increase in construction. A total of 19 new building permits were issued in 2011, an increase of five over the 14 issued in 2010. A total of 14 of those building permits were issued for houses that were built, a huge increase over the two houses built in 2010.
The business community has also seen a significant bump with a jump of eight per cent in business licenses from 2010. A total of 44 new business were registered, nearly doubling the number of new business licenses from 2010.
Last year also saw housing prices jump nearly 17 per cent the third greatest jump in B.C.
The growth is expected to continue as the Mt. Milligan mine ramps up to full capacity.