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3218.0 - Regional Population Growth, Australia, 2011-12 Quality Declaration 
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 30/04/2013   
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State summary

Population change in Greater Melbourne

Population change in regional Victoria

Population density

Centre of population


Victoria's estimated resident population at June 2012 was 5.62 million people, an increase of 89,000 since June 2011. This was the largest population increase of any state or territory. Victoria's growth rate of 1.6% was equivalent to the national rate and less than Western Australia (3.3%), Queensland and the Australian Capital Territory (both 1.9%).

SA2 POPULATION CHANGE, Victoria - 2011-12
Diagram: SA2 POPULATION CHANGE, Victoria—2011-12


At June 2012, there were an estimated 4.25 million people resident in Greater Melbourne, an increase of 77,200 since June 2011. This growth was greater than any other capital city in Australia. Greater Melbourne's rate of growth for the same period was 1.9%, slightly above the rate for all capital cities combined (1.8%).

Greater Melbourne accounted for 76% of Victoria's population at June 2012. Population growth in Greater Melbourne equated to 87% of Victoria's total growth in 2011-12.

Growth in the outer suburbs

Growth in the outer suburbs of Greater Melbourne contributed largely to Victoria's population growth between June 2011 and June 2012. This reflects greenfield development which continued to be predominantly in the west, north and south-east.

Melbourne - West was the SA4 with the largest and fastest growth in 2011-12, growing by 22,700 people (or 3.6%). Melbourne - West contained several of the fastest-growing outer-suburban SA2s in Victoria, including Truganina, which increased by 18%, Tarneit (16%), Point Cook (12%), Melton South (11%) and Wyndham Vale (10%).

The SA4 of Melbourne - South East increased by 15,700 people (or 2.3%) in 2011-12. This was the most populous SA4 in Victoria, at 700,000 people. The fastest-growing SA2s in Melbourne - South East were Cranbourne East, which increased by 15%, Pakenham - North (9.9%), and Pakenham - South (9.1%). Dandenong, although a more established area, had large growth, increasing by 1,100 people.

The population in the Melbourne - North East SA4 increased by 10,600 people (or 2.3%). Melbourne - North East contains South Morang which had the largest growth of all SA2s in Victoria, with an increase of 5,900 people (or 15%). South Morang is also the most populous SA2 in Victoria with 44,800 people.

Growth in Inner Melbourne

Inner-city and inner-suburban residential development was another driver of population growth in Greater Melbourne. Melbourne - Inner was one of the fastest-growing SA4s in the state between June 2011 and June 2012, growing by 2.4% (or 12,700 people) to reach 546,900. Within Melbourne - Inner, the inner-city SA2 of Melbourne had the largest population growth, increasing by 2,000 people, followed by Southbank, increasing by 1,300 people. Southbank also had the fastest growth in Melbourne - Inner, growing by 11%, followed by Melbourne (9.3%), South Melbourne (7.5%) and Docklands (7.1%).


ERP at 30 June
Population Change


South Morang
44 800
5 900
Point Cook
37 500
4 100
26 000
3 600
Craigieburn - Mickleham
38 700
2 900
30 300
2 300


13 500
2 000
26 000
3 600
South Morang
44 800
5 900
Cranbourne East
9 600
1 200
Point Cook
37 500
4 100

Population decline

In contrast to the strong growth of greenfield outer suburbs, some areas established during earlier metropolitan expansions declined between June 2011 and June 2012. Around 15% of the SA2s in Greater Melbourne declined in population in the year ending June 2012. Most of these were in middle- and outer-ring suburbs. The largest declines were in Mill Park - North (down 320 people), Taylors Lakes (down 260), Mill Park - South (down 220) and Eltham (down 180). None of the SA2s in Melbourne - Inner SA4 declined in population, reflecting higher-density development in areas close to the central business district.


At June 2012, the population of regional Victoria was 1.38 million. This represents a 0.9% increase from June 2011. Regional Victoria's share of the state's population declined from 24.7% at June 2011 to 24.5% at June 2012, reflecting the relatviely growth in Greater Melbourne.

Population growth

The areas within regional Victoria with the largest population increases between June 2011 and June 2012 were in and around the main regional cities and coastal towns.

Of the eight SA4s in regional Victoria, Geelong had the largest growth, up 3,500 people, followed by Latrobe - Gippsland (2,200), Ballarat (2,100) and Bendigo (1,800).

The SA2 with the largest increase in regional Victoria was the coastal town of Torquay, which increased by 760 people, while the fastest-growing SA2 was Bannockburn, in Geelong, where the population increased by 5.7%. The south-eastern town of Drouin had the second largest and second fastest growth in regional Victoria, increasing by 720 people or 5.3%.

Population decline

Around one-third of SA2s in regional Victoria declined in population in the year to June 2012, with around one-third of these decreasing by 1.0% or more. Eight of the ten fastest-declining SA2s in regional Victoria were in the two SA4s of North West, and Warrnambool and South West. The fastest declines were in Merbein (down 2.1%), Otway (down 2.0%), Moira (down 1.9%), and West Wimmera and Stawell (both down 1.7%).

The SA2 with the largest population decline was Moe - Newborough in the Latrobe Valley, which decreased by 200 people.


At June 2012, the population density of Victoria was 25 people per square kilometre (sq km), the second highest of all states and territories, after the Australian Capital Territory (160 people per sq km). The population density of Greater Melbourne was 430 people per sq km.

Within Greater Melbourne, the SA2 with the highest population density was Melbourne, with 10,100 people per sq km. This was followed by Carlton (8,400 people per sq km) and Fitzroy (7,500), which surround the central business district. Melbourne SA2 also experienced the largest increase in population density in 2011-12, up 860 people per sq km. The next largest increases occurred in Southbank (up 430 people per sq km) and South Melbourne (320).

POPULATION DENSITY BY SA2, Greater Melbourne - June 2012
Diagram: POPULATION DENSITY BY SA2, Greater Melbourne—June 2012


At June 2012, Victoria's centre of population was near the Fawkner Memorial Park in the suburb of Coburg North.

Greater Melbourne's centre of population at June 2012 was near the Monash Freeway, in the suburb of Glen Iris.

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