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Squamish, British Columbia

Mountains, ocean and temperate rainforest surround the District of Squamish, located halfway between Vancouver and Whistler in Canada’s Pacific coast province of British Columbia (BC). With a population over 17,000, Squamish was the fastest growing community in BC in 2012.

With its combination of mild coastal weather, small town charm with big city amenities, fresh air and unspoiled nature, people from around the world are discovering that life is good in Squamish.

Fast Facts

  • Squamish is one of British Columbia’s fastest growing communities.
  • Squamish is strategically located between Vancouver and Whistler, the co-hosts of the 2010 Winter Olympics.
  • Squamish is an outdoor lovers paradise for both land and water adventure.
  • Squamish is at the centre of one of Canada’s richest arts and culture regions, including First Nations heritage.

Getting Down to Business

The local economy is currently driven by the construction industry, retail trade and accommodation and food services.  A high number of Squamish residents are also employed in the health care field, as well as professional and technical services.  Squamish is focusing on further diversification of its economy by targeting investment in knowledge-based industries such as:

  • Geo-technical and enviro-technology firms that can add to the existing strong base of skills in the community;
  • Animation, film and television to supplement the existing core cluster less than an hour away in Vancouver;
  • New media entrepreneurs and firms seeking to capitalize on the strength of this industry in Vancouver while benefiting from the creative inspiration of nature; and
  • Recreational and sporting technology businesses that benefit from Squamish’s four-season outdoor sports testing and training areas, as well as a passionate sporting community.

Recreation and Outdoors

With a temperate climate and stunning natural beauty, Squamish vies for the title of “Outdoor Recreation Capital of Canada.”  Nature lovers and sporting enthusiasts can explore the endless trails for walking, hiking and mountain biking, rock climbing parks, backcountry skiing and camping.

Water lovers will be thrilled with wind surfing, kayaking and surfing options as Squamish is located at the northern tip of a fjord on the Pacific Ocean.

Families will love the excellent facilities for organized and team sports as well, including basketball, ice hockey, baseball, soccer and swimming.

Arts, Culture and Social Scene

Squamish is located along the Sea-to-Sky highway (Highway 99 North), which has been recognized as having the highest number of artisans per capita in Canada.  The strong arts and culture presence is diverse and includes a rich First Nations (Canada’s aboriginal people who are neither Inuit or Métis) history as well as multicultural art, music, dance and theatre. 

Train lovers will enjoy the West Coast Railway Heritage Park, which includes the world famous Royal Hudson steam locomotive and showcases a working railway based community and yard with operable trains and railway related artifacts.