Calgary Population 2016

1,239,220

The population of Calgary was recorded at 1,239,220 in the 2016 Canadian Census, and was recorded at 1,096,830 in the 2011 census. This is a change in population of 142,390, which is a growth rate of 2.47%.

Calgary is located in Alberta, Canada where the Bow River and Elbow River meet in the south of the province. In 2014, Calgary had an estimated population of 1.16 million, which makes it the largest city in Alberta and the third-largest city in Canada.

The city proper of Calgary has a population of 1.16 million, while the Calgary census metropolitan area (CMA) has a population of 1.37 million, which makes it the 5th largest CMA in Canada.

City Size and Population Density

The city proper has a population density of 1,329 people per square kilometer (3,442/sq mi) spread over 825 square kilometers.

Calgary Demographics

More than 25% of the population of Calgary belongs to a visible minority group, and the city ranks 3rd among major Canadian cities in terms of its proportion of visible minorities. 78% of the immigrants who have arrived in Calgary since 2001 belong to a visible minority group.

In 2011, the racial and ethnic composition of Calgary was:

  • White: 67.3%
  • Visible minority group: 30.1%
  • Aboriginal population: 2.7%

Visible minority groups include:

  • South Asian: 7.5%
  • Chinese: 6.8%
  • Filipino: 4.4%
  • Black: 2.9%
  • Southeast Asian: 1.9%
  • Latin American: 1.8%
  • Arab: 1.5%
  • West Asian: 0.8%
  • Korean: 0.8%
  • Japanese: 0.5%
  • Multiple visible minorities: 0.8%

There are over 200 ethnic origins in Calgary, with common ancestry groups including English, Scottish, Canadian, German and Irish.

In terms of religion, about 55% of the population is Christian, followed by 32% with no religion, Islam (5.2%), Sikh (2.6%), Buddhist (2.1%), Hindu (1.6%), and Jewish (0.6%).

Approximately 70% of residents use English only, with 1% using French and 25% using their native tongues after immigration to the city.

Calgary History

The area around Calgary was first inhabited by pre-Clovis people with a history dating back about 11,000 years ago, although it was occupied by several people when Europeans arrived, including the Blood, Blackfoot, Peigan and Tsuu T'ina First Nations peoples, all under the Blackfoot Confederacy. The first recorded European in the area was cartographer David Thompson in 1787, although the early settler did not arrive until 1873.

The site became Fort Brisebois, a post for the North-West Mounted Police (now the Royal Canadian Mounted Police), which was assigned to the area in 1875 to protect the fur trade. It was later renamed Fort Calgary in 1876 after Calgary on the Isle of Mull, Scotland.

Calgary became an agricultural and commercial hub beginning in the 1880s when the Canadian Pacific Railway reached the area. In 1996, the railway's headquarters moved from Montreal to Calgary. In 1894, the city was incorporated as the City of Calgary in what was then the North-West Territories.

Calgary's population began to increase quickly through 1914 when settlers the world over came to take advantage of the offer for free "homestead" land and thus ranching, and agriculture became an essential part of the economy for many years.

While oil was discovered in Alberta at the beginning of the 20th century, it did not become significant until vast reserves were discovered in 1947, which then put Calgary at the center of an oil boom, which sent the population from 272,000 in 1971 to 675,000 in 1989. The city has since diversified its economy, and its population has continued to grow.

Calgary Population Growth

Calgary had a population of 1,149,552 at the 2013 municipal census, a 2.6% increase over the 2012 population of 1.12 million. The Calgary CMA, meanwhile, has grown almost 13% in five years, the highest of any CMAs in the state. Just last year, Calgary's population hit the milestone of 1.15 million, adding nearly 30,000 people in a year. The primary source of the growth is international migration at 42%. Much of the increase in the region has been in the outskirts of Calgary, including communities like Aspen Woods, Copperfield, Skyview Ranch, and Cranston.

One of the most significant challenges the city now faces is a rapidly rising population with very little affordable housing. The problem is so bad, in fact, that last year there was a 1.3% vacancy rate for rental properties in Calgary, with the current situation bordering on a crisis. Despite this problem, Calgary's population will continue to grow rapidly in the coming years.

Calgary Population 2016

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Avg. Age
37.6
Median Age
36.7

Age Count
0 to 477,985
5 to 979,365
10 to 1469,630
15 to 1969,730
20 to 2478,640
25 to 29100,140
30 to 34109,445
35 to 39100,400
40 to 4493,405
45 to 4987,810
50 to 5486,890
55 to 5982,265
60 to 6465,120
65 to 6948,920
70 to 7431,590
75 to 7922,715
80 to 8417,315
85 to 8911,435
90 to 944,925
95 to 991,335

Calgary Age Distribution

Marital Status

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Status Count %
Divorced62,2707.04%
Married506,62557.29%
Never Married293,20033.15%
Separated22,2852.52%

Calgary Basic Marriage Statistics

Spoken Language

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Language Count %
English1,108,18090.24%
French1,1700.10%
English and French89,4007.28%
Other29,2452.38%

Calgary Language Spoken

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Pay (annual) Count % of Total
< 10k13.06%
10k to 19k12.52%
20k to 29k11.40%
30k to 39k9.76%
40k to 49k9.39%
50k to 59k8.04%
60k to 69k6.61%
70k to 79k5.30%
80k to 89k4.25%
90k to 99k3.61%
> 100k16.07%

$67,741

Avg. Income


$43,333

Median Income

Calgary Income Data

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Calgary Urban Area Population

Year Population Growth Rate Growth
1950132,0730.00%
1951141,4397.09%9,366
1952151,4857.10%10,046
1953162,2137.08%10,728
1954173,7177.09%11,504
1955186,0387.09%12,321
1956199,2507.10%13,212
1957213,3617.08%14,111
1958228,4937.09%15,132
1959244,6987.09%16,205
1960262,0777.10%17,379
1961279,8406.78%17,763
1962289,4843.45%9,644
1963299,4593.45%9,975
1964309,7933.45%10,334
1965320,4543.44%10,661
1966331,6583.50%11,204
1967345,1174.06%13,459
1968359,1424.06%14,025
1969373,6954.05%14,553
1970388,8604.06%15,165
1971404,3343.98%15,474
1972416,8973.11%12,563
1973429,8133.10%12,916
1974443,1493.10%13,336
1975456,8983.10%13,749
1976471,7063.24%14,808
1977494,0794.74%22,373
1978517,5474.75%23,468
1979542,1304.75%24,583
1980567,9174.76%25,787
1981593,8734.57%25,956
1982608,8462.52%14,973
1983624,1972.52%15,351
1984639,9562.52%15,759
1985656,0682.52%16,112
1986672,5232.51%16,455
1987688,3242.35%15,801
1988704,5192.35%16,195
1989721,0492.35%16,530
1990737,9902.35%16,941
1991755,0022.31%17,012
1992768,2451.75%13,243
1993781,6831.75%13,438
1994795,3741.75%13,691
1995809,3061.75%13,932
1996824,7941.91%15,488
1997849,3072.97%24,513
1998874,5842.98%25,277
1999900,6122.98%26,028
2000927,4532.98%26,841
2001954,5222.92%27,069
2002978,8902.55%24,368
20031,003,8802.55%24,990
20041,029,5442.56%25,664
20051,055,7912.55%26,247
20061,082,5432.53%26,752
20071,108,5462.40%26,003
20081,135,2102.41%26,664
20091,162,4402.40%27,230
20101,190,3622.40%27,922
20111,219,5742.45%29,212
20121,253,3792.77%33,805
20131,288,0242.76%34,645
20141,323,6762.77%35,652
20151,360,3162.77%36,640
20161,398,0222.77%37,706
20171,436,7732.77%38,751
20181,476,5982.77%39,825
20191,512,5392.43%35,941
20201,547,4842.31%34,945
20211,580,6592.14%33,175
20221,611,4751.95%30,816
20231,639,6131.75%28,138
20241,665,0231.55%25,410
20251,687,9021.37%22,879
20261,708,6341.23%20,732
20271,727,6861.12%19,052
20281,745,4911.03%17,805
20291,762,4140.97%16,923
20301,778,7340.93%16,320
20311,794,6540.90%15,920
20321,810,3110.87%15,657
20331,825,7900.86%15,479
20341,841,1440.84%15,354
20351,856,4020.83%15,258

Calgary Population Data (Urban Area)

  1. Canada Census Data - Official Canadian Census Data.
  2. World Urbanization Prospects - United Nations population estimates and projections of major Urban Agglomerations

Sources