Langley, British Columbia, is a unique community proud to be a part of Metro Vancouver. With a humble population of over 100,000 this lower mainland urban center lies directly east of the City of Surrey. Langley could be the perfect place for you to move and start a new family.
Affectionately known for its small town charm, extensive recreational activities, and distinctive high-end eateries and shopping, the City of Langley is a pedestrian-friendly center that embraces its tight-knit community feel as it evolves into an emerging hotspot for tourism, recreation and education.
Originally named ‘Innes Corner,’ by European homesteader, Adam Innes, the town became known as Langley Prairie in 1911, and separated to become its own municipality and incorporated as a City in 1955.
Located just 40 minutes from downtown Vancouver, Langley City and much of Langley Township lies on traditional Stó:lō Nation Unceded Territory, which stretches from Vancouver to Yale, BC.
Parks / Tourism
In 1973, the Agricultural Land Reserve was created, to help balance urban and rural use with agricultural use. Today, about 77% of Langley Township’s land mass remains green.
Langley City meanwhile, boasts over 17 public parks that comprise approximately 345 acres of green recreational space, contributing to its reputation as a popular recreation and tourism based destination. In fact, 23% of people surveyed as part of the 2016 Langley Community Survey noted that their quality of life has improved because of more parks and recreational space.
In February of 2016, the City published its Master Plan for City Park, an 11.8-hectare site located in the center-east of Langley – the largest park in the City. Bisected by Langley Creek, the Park boasts picnic areas, a 25-metre 8-lane outdoor pool, a community Music School, baseball diamonds, sports box, multi-use fields, playgrounds and a water park. The existing space will be upgraded and revamped, highlighting the natural assets of the space, as well as supporting recreational activities and additional programming elements already provided. The Master Plan seeks to address and meet future demands of the greater Langley community to provide a park which compliments Langley’s reputable parks space.
In 2006, the Township and City of Langley decided to begin a joint tourism initiative through Tourism BC’s Community Tourism Foundations program, completing the Langley Tourism plan in September of 2006.
Recreation & Culture
In 2016, the City of Langley published a Community Survey which concludes that 96% of people surveyed called the quality of life within Langley ‘good,’ or ‘very good.’ They attributed the culture, community, and environment of Langley as its biggest contributing forces.
The City features many cultural events and festival throughout the year, ranging from concert series to outdoor movies, culinary and arts festivals and a well-known regional car show.
The Langley Good Times Cruise-In all started in 1997, when a group of merchants and business owners on the main drag of Langley City held a small car show.. Now, the event features over 1,800 registered vehicles, and is one of the Top 10 mixed car shows in North America, according to My Classic Car, as well as one of the largest in Canada. The event runs annually in mid-September.
The 23rd annual Arts Alive Festival is a free “must attend festival” that features over 200 visual and performing artists showcasing music, and artisans practicing in a variety of mediums. The family-friendly festival has become a signature event of the lower mainland of BC.
The City also hosts an annual Summer Concert Series called Sounds of Summer that runs at the end of August each year at the McBurney Plaza and Douglas Park Spirit Square. It features jazz, rock and folk artist and attracts people from all over the lower mainland.
The City also hosted the first annual Fraser Valley Food Truck Festival this year in Douglas Park. The festival featured over 25 different food trucks.
Langley’s downtown core was once developed around Old Yale Road, a historic early wagon road used in the 19th and 20th centuries as a transportation route between New Westminster and Yale, BC. It serviced the Fraser Valley, and later became the Fraser Highway, and even later still, a part of the Trans-Canada Highway until 1964 when the Trans was rerouted north of Langley City.
Langley is serviced by the South Coast British Columbia Transportation Authority known as Translink, as well as five community shuttle bus routes and regular route bus routes. Langley’s ‘503’ Express Service bus route was launched in June of 2013 and provides half hour service to neighbouring Surrey.
The City is also planning for improved transportation well into the future with its recent support of the Gateway Program road improvements, contributing to the Roberts Bank Rail Corridor Project, and new rapid transit line into downtown Langley.
Langley City is easily accessed and served by the Vancouver and Abbotsford International Airports.
Education / Healthcare
Langley City falls under the jurisdiction of School District 35 Langley, which provides educational services to the Katzie, Kwantlen and Matsqui First Nations the City of Langley, and the Township of Langley.The Board operates 45 schools, with 11 public schools and two secondary schools within the City of Langley. There are also two multi-level schools, U-Connect and Langley Fundamental Middle and Secondary School.
The Board offers Fine Arts programs, career-based program options, French Immersion, Montessori options, as well as school-based programs such as: Hockey Canada Skills Academy, Aboriginal, carpentry, automotive service technicians, electrical, horticulture, piping/plumbing, etc.
The Conseil scolaire francophone de la Colombie-Britannique operates one Francophone school: école des Voyageurs primary school.
Post-secondary education is offered within the City of Langley by the 156,000 square foot Kwantlen Polytechnic University campus, which hosts cutting-edge science labs, Venlo-style greenhouses, a 0.1 hectare container nursery, horticulture field lab, brewing instructional laboratory, as well as a 250-seat auditorium for concert performances.
Healthcare is made possible through Fraserhealth. The Langley Memorial Hospital was established in 1948 and provides care with 2013 beds in 9 buildings, as well as residential care, mental health, and substance use programs, as well as public health, home health, and end-of-life care. The Langley Memorial Hospital also specializes in orthopedic surgery.
A Vibrant Economy
The City of Langley enjoys one of the highest ratios of jobs to population in the Metro Vancouver area, with the number of available jobs vastly outnumbered by its resident work force. Langley has a goal to maintain a steady job growth rate of about 1%, or 200 jobs per year; looking into the future, this means about 6,000 new jobs by 2041.
Of particular interest is Langley’s dedication to independent entrepreneurs and small business owners. The City has made small business retention and attraction a key segment of its Master Plan, and has assistance from Colliers International to continue to develop its Downtown Business Action Plan. Further, the City of Langley won the BC Small Business Roundtable’s Open for Business Award recently, for being one of the most business-friendly communities in British Columbia, and is always looking for ways to stay competitive over the long term. Already, the City’s Downtown Master Plan has attracted $160,8 million dollars in new construction from developers, investors and business owners.
For more guides of the lower mainland, be sure not to miss:
- The Ultimate Guide to Coquitlam
- The Ultimate Guide to Pitt Meadows
- The Ultimate Guide to Port Coquitlam
- The The Ultimate to Tsawwassen Bc
- The Ultimate Guide to Surrey
- The Ultimate Guide to Maple Ridge
- The Ultimate Guide To Whistler
- The Ultimate Guide to Richmond
- The Ultimate Guide to Burnaby
- The Ultimate Guide to North Vancouver
- The Ultimate Guide to West Vancouver
- The Ultimate Guide to New Westminster
- The Ultimate Guide to Port Moody