Red Deer is edging closer to the 100,000 mark.
Over the last year, there were 1,476 more residents in the city, bringing the population to 98,585 from 97,109, a 1.5 per cent increase, according to unofficial results of the 2014 municipal census released Friday.
The city continues to sit pretty as the third largest city in the province behind Calgary and Edmonton. Lethbridge trails in fourth spot with a population of 93,014, according to its 2014 civic census.
A detailed report on Red Deer’s municipal census will be released in the coming weeks.
The strongest areas of growth in Red Deer were in Vanier Woods with 603 new residents and in Timberlands with 441 new residents.
Growth in these two neighborhoods can be attributed to the new residential developments in both neighborhoods.
Figures show the average age is 31, indicating the city remains young.
The city conducts a census almost every year to get an exact count of the population to plan for growth and development. Municipalities receive provincial and federal grants based on population including the provincial transportation capital grant, provincial family and community support services and federal/provincial government infrastructure grants.
The 2013 census showed a 5.7 per cent increase over the 2011 census. There was no census conducted in 2012.
It also gives the city an opportunity to better understand and address the needs of the community.
This was the second year residents used an online tool to participate in the census and nearly 40 per cent of respondents did.