Maple Ridge, British Columbia

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Maple Ridge, British Columbia
District Municipality
Maple Ridge looking north; Fraser River and Derby (Old Fort Langley) in foreground, Pitt Meadows at left
Maple Ridge looking north; Fraser River and Derby (Old Fort Langley) in foreground, Pitt Meadows at left
Motto: "Rivers of bounty, Peaks of gold" or "Deep Roots, Greater Heights"
Location of Maple Ridge within the Greater Vancouver Regional District in British Columbia, Canada
Location of Maple Ridge within the Greater Vancouver Regional District in British Columbia, Canada
Coordinates: 49°13′N 122°36′W / 49.217°N 122.600°W / 49.217; -122.600Coordinates: 49°13′N 122°36′W / 49.217°N 122.600°W / 49.217; -122.600
Country Canada
Province British Columbia
Regional District Metro Vancouver
Incorporation 1874 (municipality status)
  est. 2014 (city status) [1]
Government
 • Mayor Ernie Daykin
Area
 • Total 266.78 km2 (103.00 sq mi)
Elevation 294 m (965 ft)
Population (2011)
 • Total 76,052
 • Density 285.1/km2 (738/sq mi)
Time zone PST (UTC-8)
 • Summer (DST) PDT (UTC-7)
Postal code span V2X, V2W, V3Z, V4R
Area code(s) 604, 778, 236
Website Maple Ridge
Flag of Canada.svg

Maple Ridge is a District Municipality in British Columbia, located in the northeastern section of Metro Vancouver between the Fraser River and the Golden Ears, a group of mountain summits which are the southernmost of the Garibaldi Ranges of the Coast Mountains. Maple Ridge's population today is over 76,000. Its downtown core is known as Haney.

History[edit]

The District of Maple Ridge was incorporated September 12, 1874. It covered an area of 33,000 acres (130 km2) yet only had approximately 50 families living in the district. Maple Ridge is British Columbia's fifth-oldest municipality (after New Westminster, Victoria, Langley, and Chilliwack). Until the expansion of Metro Vancouver (the GVRD) it was part of the now-defunct Dewdney-Alouette Regional District with the city of Pitt Meadows and District of Mission and other north-side communities east to Chehalis.

Status Change to become a City[edit]

On March 26, 2014, voters in Maple Ridge, voted to change the status from a District Municipality to a City. The question was put in a alternative approval process, which is a proposal which can be defeated if more than 10% object. Only 3 people voted against the change of status. The Votes deadline was on March 17, 2014.[2]

The Change will help clear confusion as most residents, business and outside investors considers Maple Ridge a City with the current population.

Maple Ridge Council has sent in the request for Change of status to the Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development (MCSCD), which is expected to take 6-9 months for the change to take affect. Maple Ridge is hoping that the change can be made by Sept. 17, 2014 for Maple Ridge's 140th Birthday celebrations. [3]

Communities[edit]

Maple Ridge is made up of several different historical areas, they are;

Some of these areas are identified with a cultural group. For instance, Webster's Corner and Albion are represented by the many Finnish families that settled in the area. While Port Hammond is known for its small cottage like mill houses originally built by the local mill to house its workers. Ruskin is the location of a community hall of the Sons of Norway although the area was founded by English followers of John Ruskin, while Kanaka Creek originally was a village for Kanaka employees of Fort Langley.

Port Haney, located adjacent to the Fraser River to the southwest of downtown Haney, and the site of the West Coast Express commuter rail station, is a heritage district created to protect some of the remaining buildings from earlier times. In addition to buildings already on-site when this was the steamboat landing as well as the CPR station, other heritage buildings from around the District of Maple Ridge were relocated to Port Haney to preserve them and enhance the heritage flavour of the location.[4]

Recent growth[edit]

In the past 20 years, Maple Ridge has grown very rapidly, with a 12.5% population increase between the 1996 and 2001 censuses. Because of burgeoning growth connected to the expansion of the Vancouver metropolitan area, Maple Ridge joined the Greater Vancouver Regional District in 1995 (now branded Metro Vancouver, which technically is only the name of the regional district's board), having historically been a member of the now-rescinded Dewdney-Alouette Regional District (DARD) (Mission and other eastern parts of that regional district are now in the Fraser Valley Regional District). The completion of the Golden Ears Bridge and the construction of the new high level Pitt River bridge span also signal increased growth in coming years.

Transportation[edit]

Translink provides public transit services to Maple Ridge, including buses and the West Coast Express. Haney Place Exchange is the main bus exchange, with every bus line in Maple Ridge stopping here at some point along its route.[5]

Maple Ridge is connected via Highway 7 to Pitt Meadows in the west and Mission in the east, and also by the Dewdney Trunk Road, a more northerly route which crosses into Mission via the community of Stave Falls (within Maple Ridge it corresponds to the location of what would otherwise be 120th Avenue, beginning at about 200th Street).

The Golden Ears Bridge (toll bridge) connects Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows to Langley.

The Pitt Meadows Regional Airport is the only Fraser Valley airport (other than water airports) located on the Fraser River's north side. It is located 2.5 km east of the junction of the Pitt and Fraser rivers, and serves the area north of the Fraser River from Mission up to and including Vancouver.

Abbotsford International Airport is situated just 40km away in Abbotsford and offers flights daily throughout Canada and to the Caribbean and The United States.

Vancouver International Airport is 50km away.

Industry[edit]

Early settlers in Maple Ridge engaged in forestry and agriculture. Forestry companies continue to be the largest private-sector employers in the district. They include Interfor and companies that manufacture building materials, yachts and poles. The soil and climate are not well-suited to the production of traditional food crops, but the Maple Ridge agriculture sector generates upwards of $40 million annually (2001), largely from berry crops, nurseries and horse breeding.[citation needed] The biggest challenge for the district is to attract commercial and industrial investment while trying to preserve the "close to nature" feel that is Maple Ridge's biggest asset.[citation needed]

Maple Ridge hosted the only North American high volume manufacturer of lithium-ion batteries, E-One Moli Energy.[6] However, the factory suffered major layoffs due to the 2008 recession and now only hosts a small product testing team.

Demographics[edit]

Demographics according to Statistics Canada 2006 census.

Population: 68,949
2001 to 2006 population change: 9.2%
Area: 265.79 km (165.15 mi)
Density: 259.4 /km2 (672 /sq mi)
Canada 2006 Census Population  % of Total Population
Visible minority group
Source:[7]
South Asian 1,675 2.5%
Chinese 1,575 2.3%
Black 695 1%
Filipino 820 1.2%
Latin American 385 0.6%
Arab 50 0.1%
Southeast Asian 545 0.8%
West Asian 310 0.5%
Korean 605 0.9%
Japanese 365 0.5%
Other visible minority 35 0.1%
Mixed visible minority 255 0.4%
Total visible minority population 7,320 10.7%
Aboriginal group
Source:[8]
First Nations 735 1.1%
Métis 1,065 1.6%
Inuit 10 0%
Total Aboriginal population 1,870 2.7%
European Canadian 58,970 86.5%
Total population 68,160 100%

Government[edit]

Maple Ridge is governed at the municipal level by a seven-member council made up of six councilors and the Mayor. Five of the seven school trustees elected to the School District 42 Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows Board of Education are chosen by Maple Ridge voters. School trustees, councilors and the Mayor are elected on the same ballot for three-year terms. The most recent term for both the board of education and council began in December 2008. In addition, residents of Maple Ridge vote for representatives to the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia and the Canadian House of Commons.

Ernie Daykin is the current Mayor of Maple Ridge and was first elected Mayor on November 15, 2008 and again on November 19, 2011. He served two previous terms as a Maple Ridge councilor.

Maple Ridge has a history of electing Mayors by a landslide vote and then throwing them out of office after one term. Previous Mayors include Gordon Robson, Kathy Morse, Al Hogarth, Bill Hartley, Belle Morse and Carl Durkson.

In the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia, Maple Ridge has two constituencies: In the 2009 provincial election, the BC Liberal Party and the BC New Democratic Party each won a seat. Liberal MLA Marc Dalton holds the seat to the east and NDP MLA Michael Sather holds the seat to the west. There will be a general provincial election on May 14, 2013.

In the Canadian House of Commons, Maple Ridge has one constituency: in the 2006 federal elections, the Conservative Party of Canada won the seat. The MP is Randy Kamp.

Maple Ridge is currently in the process of changing from a District to a City, which voters passed on March 17, 2014. The process is expected to take 6 to 9 months.[9]

Education[edit]

Public schools are administered by School District 42 Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows. The school district welcomes residents of Maple Ridge and neighbouring Pitt Meadows, along with students transferred in from other British Columbia School Districts. The district also accepts tuition paying international students.

The school district operates eighteen elementary schools, five secondary schools, an adult learning centre, a community college, and several other educational facilities in Maple Ridge. (The school district also includes Pitt Meadows, with four elementary schools and a high school there.)[10]

Several of the five public secondary schools have 'specialized' in certain areas and/or started 'academy' programs to attract more students and better prepare them for the 'real world'.

Thomas Haney Secondary School operates on a "self-directed" learning system that is designed to allow students to plot their own paths toward fulfilling Ministry Learning Outcomes. The school also operates an Equestrian Academy for all abilities and "no horse required", and Music, Theatre and athletic programs.

Samuel Robertson Technical Secondary School opened in 2005 and, as the name suggests, was designed to allow students to experience various technologies as well as their traditional education. The school offers various trades programs in partnership with local trade schools and colleges.

Garibaldi Secondary School offers the International Baccalaureate program and DigiPen Technology Academy.

Westview Secondary School and Maple Ridge Secondary School are the other two public high schools in Maple Ridge.

Several of the elementary schools also offer non-traditional systems. These include: Kanaka Creek Elementary, which operates a 'year-round' schooling system, exchanging a long summer break for shorter breaks throughout the year, and Yennadon Elementary School, which operates a 'cyberschool' program, enabling some students to work from home on a computer on certain days.

Several private schools are located in Maple Ridge. These include Meadowridge School, MRCS, a K-12 independent Christian school, and St. Patrick's, a Catholic school. These are not operated by the school district, but must still meet British Columbia Ministry of Education standards.

Post Secondary Education is available with;

BCIT, offers courses in Maple Ridge as part of the BCIT School of Business Entrepreneurship Associate Certificate Program. [11]

Douglas College, has a campus in Maple Ridge in Thomas Haney Secondary School [12] and also offers courses at the Ridge Meadows Maternity Clinic[13]

Sprott Shaw College, a private post-secondary institution, also has a campus in the city.

Sports[edit]

Maple Ridge is known for being the hometown of several high-profile athletes, such as baseball player Larry Walker, deceased race-car driver Greg Moore, and hockey players Cam Neely, Brendan Morrison and Andrew Ladd. These professional athletes are the product of very well organized youth sports programs, including a baseball program which has produced three Midget AAA Western Canadian Championship teams since 2001, including back-to-back championships in 2001 and 2002.

Arts and culture[edit]

A few venues for performing arts exist in Maple Ridge. These include The ACT Arts Centre & Theatre, the bandstand in Memorial Peace Park, and various theatres in local secondary schools.

The ACT contains a main-stage theatre capable of seating 486 for musical and dramatic performances as well as a more versatile Studio Theatre used for other performances as well as classes and special events. The ACT is also home to many smaller classrooms for everything from pottery to painting and a conference room. It is a non-profit public resource.

Also inside the ACT building is the Maple Ridge Art Gallery, focusing on local artists and art students.

Maple Ridge also has several large festivals and parades occurring yearly, including the Rogers Santa Claus Parade, the Jazz and Blues Festival, and the Caribbean Festival.

Maple Ridge is the home of the Maple Ridge Concert Band, a community concert band that has been in existence for over 50 years.[14]

Notable people from Maple Ridge[edit]

Surrounding municipalities[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]