Canada’s Best Places for Business 2016

Vancouver, B.C.

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Population: 657,146
Annualized population growth (%) 1.11
Avg. household income ($): 86,099
Total value of building permits issued, most recent year ($): 1,055,403,356
Avg. office lease rate ($ psf/yr): 39.10
Corporate income tax rate (%): 26.0
City website:


Pop. within 1 hr commuting distance: 2,616,608
Adults who have completed apprenticeship, trades certificate or diploma (%): 5.62
Adults who have completed university degree (%): 40.01
Adults who have completed bachelor''s degree (%): 63.21
Unemployment rate, most recent month (%): 5.54


Avg. home price ($): 1,009,920
Avg. retail lease rate ($ psf/yr): 48.31
Avg. industrial lease rate ($psf/yr): 18.20
Avg. general lease rate ($psf/yr): 41.03
Peak electricity cost for businesses ($/kWh) N/A
Peak electricity cost for mid-size commercial business ($/kWh): 0.1030
Peak electricity cost for mid-size industrial business ($/kWh): 0.1030

Taxes & Regulation

Business license cost ($): More than $500
Avg. processing time for building permit, most recent calendar year: More than 3 weeks
Non-residential property tax rate (% of assessed value): 1.400000
Commercial property tax rate (% of assessed value): N/A
Industrial property tax rate (% of assessed value): N/A
Small business income tax rate, if different (%): 13.0
Sales tax (%): 12
Special regulations or zoning: Vancouver's Rental 100 policy encourages rental housing development with incentives like development charge waivers and reduced parking standards. It also has a rezoning policy for affordable housing, and has zones that permit laneway housing for single family developments. The municipality also has a Greenest City Action Plan, and a Metro Core Jobs and Economy Policy to protect and encourage commercial development in the inner core


Largest employers: Vancouver Coastal Health Authority; Telus Corporation; Jim Pattison Group
Leading industries: Health Care; Finance; Technology
Value of capital projects >$5 million planned or under construction ($ million): 1,843,500,000
Special amenities: Vancouver is Western Canada’s largest city, with an extensive cycling network and public transit. Recreational facilities include Stanley Park, the 8-kilometre seawall trail and five oceanside beaches. It is home to the Vancouver Art Gallery, Queen Elizabeth Theatre, two universities, three colleges, and professional sports teams.
Special economic development initiatives: Vancouver hosts 22 Business Improvement Areas. The city has implemented a Digital Strategy, and a Green & Digital Demonstration Program, along with its Greenest City Action Plan.