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Georges River CouncilPopulation forecast

Georges River Council

Drivers of population change

Development history

Georges River Council is a predominantly residential local government area in southern Sydney, and is named after the river which bounds the southern part of the municipality. Hurstville City Centre is the major commercial centre for the region and is a located approximately 15 kilometres south of the Sydney GPO. The Council area features industrial areas in Peakhurst, Mortdale, Kingsgrove and Carlton, while in recent years industrial areas around the Hurstville City Centre and Kogarah Town Centre have been under pressure to convert to higher-value residential and commercial uses. Commercial activity tends to be concentrated around railway nodes, with the major centre at Hurstville, as well as other large centres including Kogarah Town Centre. Continued residential development around the Hurstville City Centre will reinforce its position as the main retail and commercial area for the region.

Population was minimal until the 1840s which was spurred by improved access (via the construction of a permanent trafficable crossing of the Cooks River), the clearing of land and the establishment of market gardens, orchards and vineyards. Growth took place in the 1880s and 1890s, aided by the opening of the Illawarra railway line in 1884. Rapid development occurred in the early 1900s, particularly during the 1920s and 1930s, spurred by the opening of the East Hills railway line. The most significant periods of residential development occurred during the immediate post-war years, accompanied by commercial growth in the Hurstville City Centre. The initial development which was focused around railway stations spread as car ownership increased and road infrastructure improved. By the mid 1960s, most of the Council area had been urbanised. By the 1980s, few areas remained available for greenfield residential development and greater rates of infill and redevelopment began. This is a process that has continued to the current time, with redevelopment of residential, commercial and industrial areas throughout the Council area and most significantly around major rail hubs on both the Illawarra and East Hills Lines. This has provided impetus for population growth in Georges River Council area over the last decade after relative stagnation or population decline since the mid 1970s.

Migration patterns

The primary housing market role that Georges River Council area has played in the post-war era was to provide housing for families. This role continues, particularly in the southern areas of Council area, although the influence of more medium and high-density housing forms and the more ’urban’ and multicultural nature of many areas other areas has become more influential. This has resulted in many younger people (18-29 years) migrating to the Council area than previously. The availability of more affordable family housing in neighbouring areas to the west and south of the Council area has lead to a minor net loss of families. It is assumed that a number of the migration patterns will continue into the future, most notably flows into the Council area from overseas and loss of persons to neighbouring areas.

Historical migration flows, Georges River Council, 2011-2016

Note: The migration flows depicted above are historical and do not represent future or forecast migration flows or subsequent council boundary changes. The arrows represent migration flows to the area as a whole and do not indicate an origin or destination for any specific localities within the area. Overseas flow shows overseas arrivals based on answers to the census question "where did the person usually live 5-years ago" and .id estimates of international out-migration.

Housing role and function

Within the Georges River Council area, different areas have both developed and will continue to evolve distinct roles within the housing market. Variations occur due to when areas were settled, the range of land uses in the area, developer interest and the varying planning policies in play. Hurstville City Centre, Hurstville (suburb), Kogarah, Allawah, Carlton, Mortdale, Penshurst and Riverwood tend to attract people in their late teens and early twenties due to the proximity to rail transport and other services, as well as the higher share of rental stock (apartments). Kingsgrove, Oatley and Peakhurst continue to attract families, while the market attracted to Blakehurst, Connells Point – Kyle Bay, Lugarno, Hurstville Grove, Peakhurst Heights and Sans Souci tends to be more established and mature families. Beverley Park – Ramsgate, Beverly Hills-Narwee, South Hurstville, attract a combination of young adults (18-24 years) and established families. With continued high rates of development expected to occur in areas that attract young people, a greater share of young adults moving into the Council area is expected.

Housing supply

There are also significant differences in the supply of residential property within Georges River Council area which has a major influence in structuring different population and household futures over the next five to twenty-five years. A number of major development opportunities have been identified, notably in Hurstville City Centre and Kogarah Town Centre, and around transit nodes at Carlton, Penshurst, Riverwood, Mortdale, Beverly Hills and Narwee. Significant medium density development is also occurring in Peakhurst, as approximately 20 hectares of previously low density residential land has been rezoned. By comparison, Blakehurst, Connells Point – Kyle, Lugarno, Peakhurst Heights, Oatley, Kogarah Bay – Carss Park and Sans Souci are expected to experience relatively minimal dwelling growth over the next 25 years.

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