Doing Business in Surrey
McQuarrie Hunter is a downtown law firm for your downtown. As part of the Surrey community, we are fortunate to be part of this region’s phenomenal growth. Surrey offers a compelling business case, with a diverse population, modern infrastructure, business-friendly governance, and plenty of space. In Surrey, there is room to grow.
Surrey: The Investment Epicenter
Real Estate Investment Network has repeatedly named Surrey the best place in British Columbia to invest. Perhaps even more impressive, Surrey’s integrated approach to sustainability and energy conservation led to the city being named “Community of the Year” in2012 by the Clean Energy Association of BC.
It is easy to see why BC’s second largest city is receiving so much acclaim. Since 2010, Surrey has seen an increase of 4% in the number of home-based and commercial industrial based businesses. Surrey’s population is also growing significantly. Since 2005, the city’s population has increased by roughly 100,000 residents. Note that the total increase throughout the next 3 decades is expected to be well over 300,000. In addition to a staggering number of new residents, Surrey has observed seven consecutive years of record-breaking construction value (exceeding $7 billion in activity), boasts one of the healthiest balance sheets in the country with about $500 million in cash reserves, and is strategically located at the trading crossroads of Greater Vancouver.
Looking to the Future: The Build Surrey Program
It is not surprising that Surrey consistently ranks as one of the best places in British Columbia to invest when one considers the City’s commitment to creating stronger business infrastructure. A perfect representation of this commitment is The Build Surrey Program – a series of capital projects that aim to accelerate the transformation of Surrey’s downtown core, cultivate Surrey as BC’s next metropolitan centre and ensure the ongoing development of major areas within the city. Notably, the Build Surrey Project aims to achieve these goals in the most ecological way possible. Although the City is a centre of rapid development, Surrey is committed to moving forward without sacrificing our community health and environment.
Surrey: Canada’s Clean Energy Hub
Working in cooperation with industry, government and academic partners, Surrey hopes to turn itself into a leader within the emergent sustainability sector. In pursuit of this goal, the city has established a municipally-owned District Energy utility to cut greenhouse gas emissions, implemented plans to develop light rail transit to ecologically shape growth to town centres, and partnered with Powertech Labs and SFU Surrey to develop several clean air initiatives.
The City’s focus on cultivating a domestic clean energy industry has already proven effective. Surrey is currently home to several clean energy companies including: Endurance Wind Power, a manufacturer of advanced wind turbines; Embedded Automation Designs, a company that designs items that allow consumers to monitor and control their energy consumption; and Wellons Canada, which specializes in the design, fabrication and installation of biomass-fired green thermal energy systems.
Surrey’s Economy: Diverse and High Tech
It is important to note that Surrey’s economy is powered by a range of industries, including finance, insurance, real estate, technology, advanced manufacturing, education, health, agriculture and the arts. Key among these for city inhabitants is the advanced manufacturing sector. Nearly 24,000 members of Surrey’s labor force work in the manufacturing sector, which is nearly 3% higher than the provincial average. The manufacturing sector is incredibly important in providing the city’s population with well-paid jobs, which in turn affect the domestic economy. It has been noted that manufacturing wages are 15% higher than the overall average for all industries and tend to provide a multiplier effect to local economies. Generally speaking, every $1 of manufacturing generates $3 in total economic activity.
Importantly, Surrey’s position as a manufacturing hub is likely to be ongoing. The advanced manufacturing sector in Surrey benefits from a number of competitive advantages. The city offers the largest inventory of industrial lands in metro Vancouver, has well-developed transportation networks, and boasts a relatively young and well-educated labour force.
If your organization is interested in doing business in Surrey, please contact McQuarrie Hunter with regards to any of your legal needs.