Dominant lifestyle classifications in the Lower Mainland

Mapping the Lower Mainland’s cultural tribes

Marketing firm has a label and demographic profile for every neighbourhood in Canada

If you’re “aging in suburbia” or on the crest of the “Asian new wave,” you’ve got plenty of company in Metro Vancouver.

Those are two of the most prevalent demographic profiles in the Lower Mainland, according to a new neighbourhood-level analysis released by marketing firm Environics Analytics.

The firm has assigned one of 68 lifestyle profiles to every postal code area in Canada, based on the age, ethnicity, income and other attributes of residents.

(You can enter any postal code into Environics’ Prizm5 database to view that neighbourhood’s profile here: https://en.environicsanalytics.ca/prizm5_lookup.aspx)

The firm generated two maps of the Lower Mainland at the request of Black Press – one showing the profiles with the highest concentrations within the region (see above) and a second (below) depicting the most culturally diverse areas.

“Aging in Suburbia” – a profile dominated by older, upper middle income suburban couples and families – is found mainly in Langley, Maple Ridge, Abbotsford and parts of Surrey.

“Not quite golden age material, the established households of Aging in Suburbia enjoy a comfortable lifestyle sustained by their upper-middle-incomes,” according to the Environics profile. “Once filled with young child-rearing families, this segment is now a sign of the times: home to a mix of older couples aging in place and middle-aged families still raising children and building nest eggs.”

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The “Urban Digerati” are concentrated mainly in downtown Vancouver, Yaletown, Kitsilano and South False Creek. They’re branded as young, highly educated and tech-savvy singles, tending to live in high rises with six-figure incomes.

The group typically hasn’t started families and has the time and discretionary income to lead active social lives that include dancing, bar-hopping, hitting film festivals and food and wine shows.

“But they’re not simply acquisitive materialists; many are globally conscious consumers who support the arts and try to lead ecologically sensitive lifestyles.”

Other top segments in the Lower Mainland include:

  • “South Asian Society” – a blend of Sikh, Hindu and Muslim immigrants who have arrived since 1990, occupying large swaths of Surrey and Abbotsford, with smaller pockets in Richmond and South Vancouver. They’re middle-aged, average earners who diligently invest for their kids’ education, and they’re more likely to live in multigenerational homes and work in manufacturing, trades, sales and service.
  • “Asian Avenues” – Successful, middle-aged and older Asian families that make up a concentrated band that dominates Richmond, south and east Vancouver, and parts of Burnaby. Tends to include older immigrants from China, as well as the Philippines, Vietnam and South Asia.
  • “Asian New Wave”  – Younger well-educated Asian singles and families that enjoy an urban lifestyle, found in pockets of Burnaby, Point Grey and Richmond. This profile consists of mostly foreign-born immigrants with modest incomes but good educations, often holding jobs in the sciences, business administration and sales and service.

Other notable segments in the Lower Mainland (see map below) include “Asian Sophisticates,” “Boomerang City,” “Emptying Nests,” “South Asian Achievers”, “New World Symphony” and “Single City Jazz.”

 

Most culturally diverse segments in Lower Mainland

Map courtesy ©2015 Environics Analytics, PRIZM5