A small town in Alberta, Devon is just 26 kilometres southwest of the province's capital, Edmonton. Situated along the banks of the North Saskatchewan River, the town is home to just over 6,500 people. According to the Town of Devon, one-third of the city's residents commute to Edmonton to work, one-third commute to the Leduc/Nisku/International Airport area, and one-third work in Devon.
Devon got its start when Imperial Oil made one of the biggest oil discoveries in history on February 13, 1947. Imperial's Leduc No. 1 well struck oil that day, and the company quickly built the town shortly thereafter to house its workers. Eager to ensure Devon was thoughtfully planned out, Imperial gave Devon the distinction of becoming the first community in Canada to receive approval from a regional planning commission.
Devon, Alberta Job Opportunities
The oil and gas industry continues to play a prominent role in Devon's economy. Other strong sectors include service, tourism, research and development, light manufacturing, education and health. One of the town's largest employers is the Devon Research Centre, with about 130 employees. Dedicated to developing environmental technology and cleaner fossil fuels, the Research Centre is a major source of science and engineering jobs in Devon, Alberta.
Other major employers include the municipal office, the BlackGold School Division and Devon General Hospital. The hospital is the primary source of health care jobs in Devon, Alberta, such as registered nurses and physician assistants.
Devon, Alberta Employment Trends
Devon is part of the Edmonton metro area, which Employment and Social Development Canada reports has an unemployment rate of 5.6 percent. This figure has remained fairly steady in past years, only rising by 0.3 percent recently. The Edmonton area has a slightly higher unemployment rate than the Kelowna metro area (5.7 percent) and a lower rate than the Calgary area (7.1 percent). Both the Calgary and Kelowna areas have experienced more substantial increases in unemployment (1.5 to1.6 percent) in recent months than Edmonton.