Swift Current Saskatchewan

SWIFT CURRENT, SASKATCHEWAN population base; looking outside our borders and treating the whole southwest area as our hub, as the economic driver for our community.” In the past decade, Swift Current has grown from a static population of 15,000 for 40 years, to the current 18,500-plus. Since 2007/08, a dramatic change has taken place, with new in- vestment and residents moving here from around the world. Perrault attributes the recent growth to a change in sentiment. “People are proud to be from Swift Current, now,” he says. “Saskatchewan has seen positive growth, as well, and we’ve bene- fitted from that.We’re still seeing record low unem- ployment numbers and a lot of job postings in our area. Entrepreneurs are leading the charge-busi- ness owners willing to invest in our community.” Agriculture is the main economic driver, encom- passing related businesses such as equipment dealerships, processing facilities, and grain ele- vators. Oil and gas is another major driver. And because Swift Current is the only large center in the southwest area, the retail/services sector is key. People come to the city for all their needs and they come often. Manufacturing is also very strong, and future prospects for development of the renewable energy sector in the southwest are looking good. “It’s very windy and the sun’s always bright,” notes Perrault. “We’ve already seen wind projects, and the Saskatchewan government just announced a major solar project, just east of us.” The city’s Strategic Plan ties into the Grow Swift campaign and incorporates a vision of “25 by 25,” representing the goal of 25,000 people in the community by the year 2025. They also have a 50- year plan that was just made public. Perrault ex- plains, “That talks about what we need to be suc- cessful for the next 50 years.We’re lucky; we’ve got good infrastructure in the ground and we’re absolutely poised for growth.” Strong transporta- tion links are a definite plus for manufacturing, exports, indeed any company looking to locate in Swift Current. Highway 1 goes straight south to the U.S., Highway 4 extends across Canada, and the two intersect in the city. The CP Rail line runs through it, and Swift Current also maintains a municipal airport. Many executives fly in out of Calgary for a quick visit to take care of business. A diverse group of major employers ensures good job opportunities are always available. Among the biggest: Sask Health; Innovation Credit Union; Great Plains College; Pattison Ag – a large John Deere dealership; Crescent Point Energy and Whitecap in the oil sector; and BATCO and S3 on the manufacturing side.When oil and potash prices fell over the last couple years, and the Saskatchewan economy shifted, Swift Current continued to thrive, thanks to its economic diver- sity. According to Perrault, “Great Plains College is a true community partner and an important asset for Swift Current. I believe they’re going to expand their services with a renewable energy program at the college.We’re working with them because they’re training the young people who’ll be the next leaders in our community.” As for housing and industrial development,