Nestled in the Coastal Mountains of BC, Squamish offers an unparalleled location, with the infrastructure and amenities you need to start, grow or relocate your business. The waterfront offers access to many marine based industries, including a deep-water port, operated by Squamish Terminals, a critical gateway for moving forestry, steel and project cargos to and from world markets. Rail connections provide access to many North American markets, while the $600 million upgraded highway offers safe and quick road access to Vancouver (55 minutes) and Whistler (45 minutes). There is also easy access to Vancouver International Airport (YVR), seaplanes in downtown Vancouver and BC Ferries at Horseshoe Bay.
Squamish’s location and natural environment has inspired many businesses and sectors. Surrounded by mountains and forests, with one million hectares within the Sea to Sky Forest District, Squamish has high quality wood for export, manufacturing and value add products. Beyond wood manufacturing, the strong transportation infrastructure and access to land has made Squamish an ideal location for a range of manufacturing businesses.
Tourism has flourished in Squamish, with the natural environment providing world class hiking, biking, climbing and many other outdoor pursuits, attracting visitors from around the world. The knowledge based sector has expanded exponentially with Squamish, inspiring creatives and designers and offering the perfect environment to film, test products and host events.
Squamish is also home to a number of established technology companies and recent start-ups. High-speed, fibre internet connectivity is available throughout the area to support these growing businesses. Clean technology, education and research is also an area of growth. The Squamish Clean Technology Association (SCTA) seeks to position Squamish as a world leader in climate change initiatives, with the Oceanfront location as an incubator of clean energy innovation.
Check out Squamish’s location from the best view in the town at the Sea to Sky Gondola.
Squamish offers your business access to a growing population, with a young, educated and talented workforce. The expertise and skills of the workforce are reflected in the diverse economy, including trade & transportation, technology, manufacturing, knowledge based services, education and tourism.
Squamish was voted best place to work in 2017, by Business BC, which looked at seven different factors and recognized very strong income growth, business growth potential, location, proximity to Vancouver and Whistler, and lifestyle.
If you are looking to start a business, then you are in good company. Squamish is a community with a long history of entrepreneurs and pioneers. Squamish is a community of creativity, innovation and desire for sustainable growth.
Best Place for Work, 2017. BC Business:
1. Average household income: $105,593
2. Average household income under 35: $80,260
3. Average household spending on recreation: $6,225
4. Average shelter costs: $23,635
5. Five-year population growth (from 2011 to 2016): 11.77%
6. Five-year average household income growth: 19.49%
7. Unemployment rate: 5.30%
The Squamish lifestyle is a force of its own. Tucked between the mountains and the sea, halfway between Vancouver and Whistler, Squamish offers a lifestyle that is unlike anywhere else. After work, Squamish residents can access some of the best bike trails on the West Coast, or jump on their SUP or kiteboard while enjoying the breathtaking waters of the Howe Sound. Additionally, Squamish is known as one of the best places in the world for rock climbing and hiking. Winter brings more outdoor recreation, with easy access to world renowned mountain resort and backcountry skiing.
Beyond the outdoors, Squamish is brimming with growth, making it an increasingly attractive place to live and work. Kids and adults are entertained at the many indoor recreation indoor activities, such as rock climbing and trampolining, along with an eclectic shopping scene, vibrant arts & culture, and a cornucopia of dining options. From vegan restaurants and craft breweries to fine dining and international cuisine, Squamish has it all.
The appeal of Squamish’s lifestyle attracts a talented and skilled workforce, enabling a productive and healthy lifestyle with the perfect work-life balance.
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Squamish actively encourages economic growth and diversity. There are many industrial and commercial land development opportunities, including downtown and oceanfront revitalization initiatives, which will include both residential, commercial and light industrial opportunities.
The Chamber of Commerce, along with the District of Squamish’s economic development team, are here to help businesses start, grow and move to our community. In 2016, the District of Squamish developed a 2017-2019 Economic Action Plan, creating a road map for economic development. Other strategies and plans are in place to encourage growth, along with the upcoming revised Official Community Plan.
Squamish has seen strong population and income growth, resulting in an increase in services and amenities, while remaining more affordable than Greater Vancouver. A small town feel with access to big town services, making it the ideal place to locate your business.
Community spirit is strong here. There is a special feeling of belonging in Squamish and there is no shortage of community events, classes and causes for those looking to get involved. It’s also a great way to find your tribe and feel good about giving back. At the Chamber, we offer many opportunities for members to network and engage with the community.
Life is better when we work together. In Squamish, the community partners work together with a united goal of making Squamish a fantastic place to live, work and visit. The Squamish Chamber of Commerce works closely alongside the District of Squamish, Tourism Squamish and other associations in developing strategies for economic development and to create strong partnerships to grow our community.
The combination of Squamish’s amazing location, infrastructure, young educated residents and outdoor lifestyle makes Squamish awesome. There’s no better place to live, work and play.
The New York Times published a list of 52 Places to Go in 2015 and Squamish was number 32 on the list. Read the full article here.
The District of Squamish is situated on the traditional territories of the Squamish Nation, who have lived in this area since before recorded time. Our name, Squamish, is an English adaptation of the First Nation word Skwxwu7mesh, meaning “Mother of the Wind” and “people of the sacred water”.
The ‘Eye of the Creator’ icon in our community logo proudly represents the powerful connection that our people – from Squamish Nation to residents of today – have with nature and the magnificent scenery that surrounds us. Ocean, mountains, granite, forest, wind and rivers. These natural elements have defined us and our changing economy through the ages, and today offer a lifestyle packed with adventure that sets Squamish apart from all others.