Paper Example: Comparative Geographical Analysis of Two Burnaby and White Rock

Published: 2023-10-09
Paper Example: Comparative Geographical Analysis of Two Burnaby and White Rock
Essay type:  Compare and contrast
Categories:  Analysis Geography Comparative literature
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1780 words
15 min read

While moving into a new location, it is key that due diligence is conducted to ensure that the location that one is moving into meets all the requirements and needs of the people concerned. Therefore, one should conduct a geographical analysis of the locations that they are supposed to choose from, and after conclusively going over the checklist on the issues that they are looking for, make an informed decision on the same. The process of geographic analysis is described as the process of looking for patterns in locations by analyzing the connections and relations between the areas. The result of the analysis provides meaningful and reliable information that can inform one’s decisions whenever one needs to choose between two or more areas (Wheeler et al., 2013). The process of geographical analysis involves critical thinking processes, whereby the person making the decisions will have to undergo processes whereby they are to look through the choices presented critically and make informed decisions after weighing the different aspects of the situations presented. When this is done, the final decision will be assumed to have successfully met the needs of the persons involved. For this study, this paper will conduct a critical process of geographical analysis of Burnaby and White Rock.

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At this stage, the critical issues concerned with the process of geographical analysis. The issues in and around the physical geography, population, sociocultural issues, transport and communication, and the economic sectors of Burnaby and White Rock will be examined. Physically, Burnaby has a landscape made up of hills, ridges, and valleys. It is also known for its alluvial plains. The city experiences more snowfall compared to other areas of the Metropolitan Vancouver since it also has a mountain, Mountain Burnaby, in its vicinity (City of Burnaby, 2020). Due to the alluvial plains and the cool weather, the area is known for the presence of commercial firms and farming activities. Comparatively, White Rock has a moderate climate all-year-round due to the city being further away from the coastal mountains, which leads to extremely low temperatures. The area receives at least 20% more sunshine compared to other areas in Vancouver and has a steady supply of rainfall (Artibise, 2015). The mild temperatures make the location a preferred retirement location since the weather conditions would not affect people compared to the harsher conditions in Vancouver. A significant physical feature is the existence of a white rock, from which the area got its name.

In terms of population, Burnaby has a population of 249,197, with the majority of the occupants of the city being working class who work in the firms and businesses spread across the location (CivilInfoBC, 2020). The area has a medium population density, and therefore open to more occupants should there be a need for one to move there. On the other hand, the majority of White Rock’s population is made up of old and retired people, with the weather of the area making it favorable to older people whose health would not allow for them to move to cooler locations. The location’s preference for older people as a retirement destination explains the town’s meager 19,952 total population.

Burnaby is a metropolitan area comprising of a significantly younger population, and this would, therefore, explain the area’s flexibility and openness to different cultural practices and beliefs. The community there is made up of different social amenities that would support the existence of people from diverse backgrounds, with the younger population also creating room for more tolerance towards people of different beliefs (PSD, 2016). Comparatively, the existence of a dominantly aged population at White Rock explains their conservative approaches to life and the rigidity with which they address the issues concerned with change and new ideas in society. Older people hold on to the socio-cultural activities and beliefs that they had during their prime years. Therefore this explains the value attached to traditional values towards socializing and family, compared to Burnaby, where family values are more flexible and subject to the availability of the people concerned. Burnaby also has more advanced forms of socializing, with the community finding entertainment spots in the malls that are in and around their area. In contrast, White Rock has a preference for the more traditional forms of entertainment, such as playing in the ice arenas and taking walks in the nature trails.

In terms of transportation, Burnaby has an excellent transportation system, with the Sky Train being the most notable transportation system in the area. There are also excellent road systems which have helped the bus transportation in and outside the area, with the Metro Vancouver Bus System being the major bus company in the location. On the other hand, White Rock has a preference for road transportation, and there are different options for commuting in the area (White Rock Chamber of Commerce, 2020). There are, therefore, various options for road transport, ranging from the use of public bus transportation, use of personal vehicles, or the much-preferred vanpooling system of transportation.

Due to the physical and demographic setup of Burnaby, rigorous economic activities are going on in the area. There are, therefore, different economic activities that contribute towards the location’s economic prosperity. There are, therefore, many residential locations in the city to support the population, a competent transportation network, many business and amusement parks, several film studios, and television stations. On the other hand, there is little economic activity in White Rock since the majority of the population there are retired and therefore do not have any strength to undertake any physical and economic activity that would lead to earning income (White Rock, 2020). The economic activities in White Rock are only set up to support the population made of older people in the society.


Comparing the two cities, there are different characteristics from which one can analyze and arrive at their desired decision. In terms of physical geography, Burnaby sits on a bigger location compared to White Rock, although White Rock has a preferable climatic condition compared to the conditions at Burnaby. Therefore, given that I am looking to start and raise a family in one of the two locations, White Rock would be a preferred location if this was the only factor under consideration. Secondly, the population of the two areas would inform my decision-making in terms of looking at the population density and demographic characteristics. Therefore, I would opt for Burnaby as the location in which to settle and raise a family, since it is not overpopulated or underpopulated as White Rock is. White Rock has the characteristics of an underpopulated area, which would mean that there are lesser social amenities compared to the more populated area of Burnaby, which enjoys the possibility of being more heavily invested with social amenities that would be useful for raising of a family.

I prefer to raise a family in a location that offers the cultural diversity and more openness and acceptance of diverse cultural and social practices. It is for this reason that I would opt for settling and starting a family in Burnaby. Children require environments that would offer them the opportunity to become whoever they would like to be, and also accept the different opinions that they will hold as they grow up. However, White Rock’s dominant population of older people presents the challenge of being in a society that has unchanged social practices that do not favor the development and growth of children. It would, therefore, be risky to raise children in an environment that does not socially prepare the children for the future social needs of society.

Given that I am looking for an area that would support my movement to and from work, as well as the transportation needs of the family that I will have when I move to the location. Burnaby provides for this particular need since it has a more developed transportation system compared to that in White Rock. The availability of options provides Burnaby with the opportunity to choose from one which meets the needs of that particular time. At the same time, White Rock only has the availability of road transport, which poses the threat of overcrowding in the area, which poses the threat of activities being brought to a standstill if the road transportation system is in a condition that cannot be used. I would, therefore, settle for Burnaby if this were the only point of consideration for raising a family. The economic activities of Burnaby make it a preferable destination for moving into since it has various economic activities that would provide employment opportunities for me to support my family. It would be better to set up the family in this location compared to White Rock, which has limited economic activities and fewer chances of economic development due to the older population in the area.

Finally, if I were to decide on which location to set up and develop a family from, I would settle on Burnaby. This is because the area caters to the social, economic, and cultural needs that my family and I would have. Additionally, the area offers room for socioeconomic development, which is important for raising a family that can meet the needs of the future as well as the present.


Conclusively, through the use of geographical analysis, the possibility of settling in areas where one’s social, economic, and cultural needs are met is increased. It is through geographical analysis that one weighs the options available through the lens of the needs of the individual in question in terms of the physical location and characteristics, population, socio-cultural patterns, transport and communication networks, and the economic activities of the areas. Having conducted geographic analysis and comparison of Barnaby and White Rock areas of the Vancouver metropolitan, I would conclude that Barnaby offers more viable solutions to the concerns that I have if I were to move in either area to raise a family.


Artibise, A. F. (2015). White rock. The Canadian Encyclopedia. of Burnaby. (2020). Home.

CivicInfoBC. (2020). Municipality: Burnaby (City). CivicInfo BC. (2016, June 20). City of Burnaby: How the best run city in Canada is actually run. Public Sector Digest.

Wheeler, D., Shaw, G., & Barr, S. (2013). Statistical techniques in geographical analysis. Routledge.

White Rock Chamber of Commerce. (2020). City of white rock. South Surrey & White Rock Chamber of Commerce, BC. Rock. (2020). White Rock, BC | Official Website.

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