3218.0 - Regional Population Growth, Australia, 2008-09 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 30/03/2010   
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State summary

South-east Queensland

Population growth in the remainder of Queensland

Declining populations

Population density

Centre of population

Local government area populations


At 30 June 2009, the estimated resident population of Queensland was 4.43 million, an increase of 116,500 people since June 2008. For the five years from June 2004 to June 2009, the average annual growth rate for Queensland was 2.6% per year, making it the fastest-growing state or territory for that period. The 2008-09 growth rate of 2.7% was the second fastest rate of all states or territories, behind Western Australia.

SLA POPULATION CHANGE, Queensland - 2008-09
Diagram: SLA POPULATION CHANGE, Queensland—2008–09


At June 2009, south-east Queensland, comprising the SDs of Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, and West Moreton, accounted for two-thirds (66%) of the total population in Queensland. From June 2008 to June 2009, the population in south-east Queensland increased by 80,900, accounting for 69% of the total growth in the state.

The SD of Brisbane, which experienced the largest growth of all SDs within Queensland, recorded an increase of 52,100 people (2.7%) in the year to June 2009. This resulted in Brisbane reaching the population milestone of two million, which was 45% of Queensland's population.

The fastest-growing SD in south-east Queensland was West Moreton, which increased by 4.0% (or 3,600 people) in the same period.

In the year to June 2009, the three most populous LGAs in Australia (Brisbane (C), Gold Coast (C) and Moreton Bay (R)) also recorded the largest increases in population. Brisbane (C) increased by 21,200 people (2.1%), Gold Coast (C) by 15,600 (3.1%), and Moreton Bay (R) by 13,300 (3.7%).

All 10 LGAs within south-east Queensland experienced population growth in the year to June 2009. Among these, Ipswich (C), Lockyer Valley (R) and Somerset (R) all experienced growth of 4.0% or more, with Ipswich (C) recording the fastest growth at 5.0% (or 7,700 people). Over half (56%) of the growth in Ipswich (C) was accounted for by the SLA of Ipswich (C) - East, which increased 7.3% (4,300 people).

Brisbane City

Population growth within the LGA of Brisbane (C) was widespread, with almost 95% of SLAs recording an increase in population. The SLAs that experienced the largest growth in the year to June 2009 were Wakerley and Calamvale, which both increased by 860 people (14.7% and 7.2% respectively). Parkinson-Drewvale had the third-largest growth with a population increase of 800 people (5.7%).

The three fastest growing SLAs in Brisbane (C) were Pallara-Heathwood-Larapinta, which grew by 19.4% (440 people), Wakerley, which grew by 14.7% (860) and Moggill, which grew by 13.2% (360).

Gold Coast City

Of the 38 SLAs within the Gold Coast (C) LGA, almost 95% experienced population growth in the year to June 2009. As in previous years, Kingsholme-Upper Coomera was the largest growing SLA, with an increase of 2,100 people (9.9%), followed by Southport and Ormeau-Yatala, which increased by 1,400 (5.0%) and 1,300 (9.5%) people respectively.

In the year to June 2009 Pimpama-Coomera was the fastest growing SLA in the Gold Coast (C), increasing 13.7% (1,100 people).


In 2008-09, six of the nine SDs outside south-east Queensland increased their population by between 2.0 and 3.1%. The fastest growing SD outside of south-east Queensland was Wide Bay-Burnett, which increased by 3.1% (8,500 people). Northern and Mackay followed, increasing by 2.7% each (5,900 and 4,500 people respectively).

Many LGAs outside south-east Queensland experienced large population increases in the year to June 2009. Of these, the coastal LGAs of Townsville (C), Cairns (R) and Fraser Coast (R) had the largest growth, increasing by 5,600 (3.2%), 5,200 (3.2%) and 3,500 (3.6%) people respectively. Other coastal LGAs with population increases of more than 2,000 people were Mackay (R), Bundaberg (R) and Rockhampton (R).

The LGA with the fastest growth outside of south-east Queensland was Gympie (R), which increased by 3.8% or 1,800 people in the year to June 2009. The coastal LGAs of Fraser Coast (R), Townsville (C), Cairns (R) and Gladstone (R) also increased by 3.2% or more in this period.


ERP at 30 June
Population Change


Brisbane (C)
1 052 500
21 200
Gold Coast (C)
515 200
15 600
Moreton Bay (R)
371 200
13 300
Sunshine Coast (R)
323 400
9 600
Ipswich (C)
162 400
7 700


Ipswich (C)
162 400
7 700
Lockyer Valley (R)
35 600
1 600
Somerset (R)
21 600
Gympie (R)
48 300
1 800
Moreton Bay (R)
371 200
13 300


The trend of population decline in western areas continued in 2008-09, with the North West and Central West SDs showing respective decreases of 220 and 30 people. Both of these SDs were drought-affected during the period.

In the year to June 2009, almost one-quarter of LGAs in Queensland experienced population decline. The largest population decrease occurred in the LGA of Mount Isa (C) in North West SD, which lost 160 people, partly due to the closure of mines in the area.


At June 2009, the population density of Queensland was 2.6 people per sq km. Most of Queensland had a very low population density with 64 SLAs, comprising 92% of the total area of Queensland, having less than one person per sq km. The population density of the Brisbane SD was 340 people per sq km, slightly lower than Australian capital cities combined (370 people per sq km).

The most densely populated SLAs in the Brisbane SD at June 2009 were inner city New Farm (5,800 people per sq km), Kangaroo Point (5,600) and City - Inner (5,000). Moreton Island had the lowest population density (1.7), followed by Pinkenba-Eagle Farm (6.4) on the coast.

In 2008-09, the largest increase in population density in Brisbane SD occurred in the SLA of West End, which increased from 3,700 to 4,100 people per sq km (an increase of 340 people per sq km). City - Inner had the second-largest increase in density (260 people per sq km).

Around three percent of SLAs within Brisbane SD experienced a decrease in population density between June 2008 and 2009. The largest decrease occurred in City - Remainder (down 40 people per sq km).

POPULATION DENSITY, Brisbane SD - June 2009
Diagram: POPULATION DENSITY, Brisbane SD—June 2009


Queensland's centre of population at June 2009 was in the LGA of North Burnett (R), roughly 100 kilometres west of Maryborough. The centre moved approximately 1.9 kilometres east-north-east in the five years to June 2009, reflecting sustained population growth in Queensland's coastal regions over this time.

The centre of population for the Brisbane SD at June 2009 was in the Botanic Gardens on the banks of the Brisbane River, just south of the city's central business district.


For a full list of LGA populations, see the Downloads tab.