The South Similkameen Health Centre in Keremeos, which is attached to the Kyalami Place assisted living facility. (Brennan Phillips - Western News)

The South Similkameen Health Centre in Keremeos, which is attached to the Kyalami Place assisted living facility. (Brennan Phillips - Western News)

Keremeos has oldest population in Similkameen-Okanagan

Of Keremeos’ 1,605 residents 47% are at least 65, and 6.9 per cent 85 or older.

Almost half of Keremeos’ population is seniors, according to the 2021 census.

According to the most recent data released by StatsCan, 47 per cent of Keremeos’ 1,605 residents are at least 65, and 6.9 per cent 85 or older.

That keeps Keremeos as one of the oldest communities in the South Okanagan Similkameen. It places Keremeos’ population above Penticton’s 30 per cent who are 65 and older, and the Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen as a whole has 33 per cent who are 65 and over.

The average age of a Keremeos resident is 58, compared to 49 in Penticton and 50.5 in the RDOS as a whole.

READ MORE: Keremeos will reach 50 per cent senior population by 2026: report

The latest housing report for the RDOS predicted that based on previous trends shown in the 2016 census, Keremeos would hit 1,600 residents and 50 per cent would be seniors by 2026.

Based on the 2021 census, Keremeos has already surpassed the population goal and is well on its way to hitting the aging population mark ahead of 2026.

This older population impacts multiple aspects of the community, from the annual income available to residents, to the demand on the health care sector and to the need for affordable and accessible housing.

Several housing projects are currently underway in Keremeos which include accessible offerings and both subsidized and affordable rent rates, including the upcoming Ambrosia development.

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.

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