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A major city in western Canada, Vancouver is located in the Lower Mainland area of British Columbia. It is the provincial capital of that province. With 631,486 people living in the city, it was the most populated city in the province according to the 2016 census, an increase from 603,502 in 2011. In 2016, the Greater Vancouver region had a population of 2,463,431 citizens, making it the third-largest metropolitan area in Canada in terms of population. A population density of more than 5,400 persons per square kilometre in Vancouver makes it the most densely populated city in Canada. With a population of 52 percent who are not native English speakers, 489 percent who are neither native English nor French speakers, and 50.6 percent who identify as members of visible minority groups, Vancouver is one of the country's most ethnically and linguistically diverse towns and cities.

According to the Economist Intelligence Unit, Vancouver has been consistently ranked among the world's top five cities for livability and quality of life for the past ten years. It is also the first city to be consistently ranked among the top ten of the world's most well-lived cities for the past ten years. However, Vancouver is also the most expensive city in Canada to live in and has the fourth most expensive property market in the world, according to the World Bank. The city announced in 2011 that it hoped to become the greenest city in the world by 2020. Vancouverism is the design ideology that guides the city's urban planning and development.