Our View: Langley Advance eyes the future

The Langley Advance started publishing July 23, 1931.

The Langley Advance has been arriving on the doorsteps and in the mailboxes of local residents for 84 years as of this edition.

When the paper started publication under E.J. Cox, Langley already had a lot of history. It was the birthplace of B.C., the site of the region’s first Hudson’s Bay Company trading post, and a home and crossroads for First Nations people for thousands of years. It had grown into a collection of sleepy farming villages, like Langley Prairie, Aldergrove, Milner, and Fort Langley by the time the Advance put out its first edition.

Since then, the Langley Advance has tried to report the changes, big and small, that have happened to Langley.

There have been many. Langley didn’t stay small for long, and its growing pains led it to change in unexpected ways. The split into Langley City and Township has defined more than 60 years of local politics, as well as confusing outsiders as to why there are two towns with the same name right next to one another.

We’ve seen periods of massive growth, with old-timers in the 1970s and 1980s shocked at the sprawl of Brookswood and Walnut Grove. Now adults who grew up in those neighbourhoods, and have kids of their own, are shocked at the speed of growth in Willoughby.

The Langleys together have a population of around 140,000 people, and it’s only going up. We went from treating the sick in homes to building a small hospital that expanded several times – and may need another expansion soon. We’ve seen local residents achieve Olympic and Paralympic status, we’ve seen acts of astounding charity and kindness, and we’ve seen the community come together in times of flood and fire.

We’ve seen crime, crowded schools, and more elections than we care to remember. We’ve seen our business change, from pure print to the internet and social media. Regardless of the medium, the Advance will keep doing what it has done: documenting what’s going on in Langley.

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