The latest from the New Brunswick Institute for Research, Data and Training

If We Build It, Will They Come?

Author: NB-IRDT Staff

Posted on Jun 9, 2022

Category: Health , , Seniors , Youth , Education


In popular culture, one phrase is often used to manifest success: “If you build it, they will come.”

While this idea exudes positivity and the power of hard work, we have to question its accuracy in terms of population research.

In a province like New Brunswick, which is heavily invested in population growth and recruitment, does building new public facilities and increasing public services actually prompt people to come and stay? And, adversely, does closing public facilities or reducing services prompt them to leave?

Answering these questions could be key to population recruitment and retention strategies, which are crucial to the future success of our province’s economy, labour market, and social culture.

Across NB, public facilities like schools and hospitals provide valuable services to the population, taking on the role of “public assets.” In a recently released report, researchers at NB-IRDT investigate the link between these public assets and population mobility in the province, asking whether opening and closing facilities and changing service offerings has any effect on New Brunswickers’ mobility decisions. More specifically, they look at the population mobility patterns in the neighbourhoods near these facilities to see if there are any notable changes in population movement before and after a decision to open, close, or repurpose a school or hospital.

Curious to see what they found? Read the report or the infographic to learn more.

Related Pages: Public facility closure and its impact on population mobility in New Brunswick



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