3218.0 - Regional Population Growth, Australia, 2014-15 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 30/03/2016   
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At June 2015, New South Wales (NSW) had an estimated resident population of 7.62 million people. Between 2014 and 2015, the population of NSW increased by 104,300 people (1.4%).

POPULATION CHANGE BY SA2, New South Wales - 2014-15

Diagram: POPULATION CHANGE BY SA2, New South Wales - 2014-15


At June 2015, the estimated population of Greater Sydney was 4.92 million, an increase of 83,300 people since June 2014. This was the second-largest growth of all Greater Capital Cities in Australia, behind Greater Melbourne (91,600 people), and represented 80% of the state's total growth in 2014-15. Greater Sydney's growth rate was 1.7% over this period.

The SA4 in Greater Sydney with the largest growth in 2014-15 was Sydney - Parramatta, which increased by 10,700 people. Sydney - City and Inner South, and Sydney - South West also had large growth, adding 9,800 and 8,700 people respectively. The Central Coast grew by 2,300 people during the same period.

Growth in Greater Sydney

In 2014-15, the ten SA2s with the largest population increases in NSW were all within Greater Sydney. The inner-city SA2 of Waterloo - Beaconsfield had the largest growth, increasing by 3,100 to reach 29,800 people. Large growth also occurred in Cobbitty - Leppington (up by 2,600 people) in Sydney's outer south-west and Homebush Bay - Silverwater (2,400). Warnervale - Wadalba continued to have the largest growth on the Central Coast, up by 460 people. A very small proportion (5.7%) of the SA2s in Greater Sydney declined in population between 2014 and 2015.

Greater Sydney also contained the ten fastest-growing SA2s in NSW. Cobbitty - Leppington, which includes the expanding land releases around Oran Park, was the fastest growing (up by 26%). This was followed by Homebush Bay - Silverwater (up by 15%), Waterloo - Beaconsfield (11%), Riverstone - Marsden Park (8.2%) near Blacktown, and Elderslie - Harrington Park (6.9%) in the outer south-west.


ERP at 30 June
Population Change


Waterloo - Beaconsfield
29 800
3 100
Cobbitty - Leppington
12 300
2 600
Homebush Bay - Silverwater
17 900
2 400
Parklea - Kellyville Ridge
33 500
1 700
28 700
1 400


Cobbitty - Leppington
12 300
2 600
Homebush Bay - Silverwater
17 900
2 400
Waterloo - Beaconsfield
29 800
3 100
Riverstone - Marsden Park
13 000
Elderslie - Harrington Park
19 900
1 300

(a) All population figures presented in this table are rounded. Estimates of population change are based on unrounded numbers.
(b) Excludes SA2s with a population of less than 1,000 at June 2014.


At June 2015, just over one-third of NSW residents lived outside Greater Sydney. The population in the rest of NSW increased by 21,000 people between 2014 and 2015 to reach 2.70 million.

In 2014-15, the SA4 of Illawarra SA4, to Sydney's south, experienced the largest increase in population in the rest of NSW, up by 3,400 people. Large growth was also recorded in Hunter Valley (excluding Newcastle), just to the north of Sydney, up by 3,400 people. In the adjacent SA4 of Newcastle and Lake Macquarie population grew by 3,000 and in Richmond - Tweed on the far north coast by 2,600 people.

Newcastle and Wollongong

In the SA4 of Newcastle and Lake Macquarie, the two largest-growing SA2s in the 12 months to June 2015 were Morisset - Cooranbong, on the lake's western shore, and Maryland - Fletcher - Minmi, to the north-west of Newcastle, both up by 330 people. Edgeworth - Cameron Park to the west of Newcastle, and Glendale - Cardiff - Hillsborough to the north of Lake Macquarie, also had large increases (up by 280 people each). Stockton – Fullerton Cove to the north of Newcastle continued to have the fastest growth (2.8%) in the region. The largest decline was in Mount Hutton - Windale, down by 30 people.

In the Illawarra SA4, the largest growth occurred in Wollongong, up by 590 people, followed by Shellharbour – Flinders (up by 500), which also had the fastest growth (3.2%). The next large increases were in Shellharbour - Oak Flats (280) and Dapto - Avondale (250). Unanderra – Mount Kembla recorded the only decline in the region, down by 30 people.

Coastal and hinterland change

Outside of Greater Sydney, Newcastle and Wollongong, the largest population increase in coastal and coastal hinterland areas in the 12 months to June 2015 was in the Maitland - West SA2 in the Hunter Valley, which increased by 660 people. The next largest increase was in Kingscliff - Fingal Head on the far north coast, up by 480 people, followed by Cessnock (430) in the Hunter Valley, Nowra on the south coast (350) and Port Macquarie – East on the mid-north coast (330). Maitland SA2 recorded the fastest growth in this region at 5.1%, which was also the fastest growth outside Greater Sydney.

The SA2 of Murwillumbah in the Richmond - Tweed region had the largest population decline for this period, down by 100 people. Population decline was also recorded in Taree on the mid-north coast (down by 90) and Raymond Terrace in the Hunter region (down by 70). To the south of Sydney, the largest decline in population was in Southern Highlands SA2, down by 90 people.

Inland change

Regional centres continued to drive population growth in inland NSW. The largest increase in 2014-15 was in Bathurst SA2 in the Central West (up by 340 people), followed by Bathurst - East (300), Wagga Wagga - South (240) and Griffith (230). Bathurst - East also recorded the fastest inland growth, up by 2.9%.

Of the remaining mainly rural SA2s, the largest increase was in Queanbeyan Region (up by 420 people) followed by Tamworth Region (250), Orange Region (190) and Goulburn Region (180). These areas are generally in the vicinity of established urban centres or include major towns.

The largest declines were in Broken Hill (down by 180 people), Queanbeyan West - Jerrabomberra (down by 130) and neighbouring Karabar (down by 90). Many of NSW's predominantly rural SA2s also declined in population. Fastest declines were in Bourke - Brewarrina (down by 2.3%) in the far west and Gilgandra (down by 1.9%) in the Orana region.


The population density of NSW at June 2015 was 9.5 people per square kilometre (sq km). In Greater Sydney, the population density was 400 people per sq km.

Eight of the ten most densely-populated SA2s in Australia were in Greater Sydney, with the top five Sydney areas located around the central business district. The highest population densities were in Pyrmont - Ultimo (15,100 people per sq km), Potts Point - Woolloomooloo (13,800), Surry Hills and Darlinghurst (both 13,500), and reflect inner-city urban consolidation.

The largest increases in population densities in NSW in 2014-15 were in Waterloo - Beaconsfield (up by 850 people per sq km), Redfern - Chippendale (490) and North Sydney - Lavender Bay (320).

In the rest of NSW, the highest population densities were in Newcastle - Cooks Hill (2,900 people per sq km), nearby Waratah - North Lambton (2,500) and Wollongong (2,800).
POPULATION DENSITY BY SA2, Greater Sydney - June 2015

Diagram: POPULATION DENSITY BY SA2, Greater Sydney - June 2015


The centre of population for NSW at June 2015 was near the banks of the Hawkesbury River near Lower Portland. Between 2005 and 2015, the centre moved around 3.0 kilometres south-east, reflecting strong population growth in Greater Sydney and along the NSW coast.

At June 2015, the centre of population of Greater Sydney was in the suburb of Ermington, just north of the Parramatta River.