Given the current interest in population growth, in the third of my articles I’ll take a look at forecast population growth in Greater Western Sydney councils.
To reiterate, the projections I’m discussing are based on forecasts released by the NSW Government Bureau of Transport Statistics (BTS – formerly the Transport Data Centre) and the usual caveats apply about their reliability or otherwise.
In the last article I discussed the 14 Sydney councils that will have populations over 200,000 in 2036, compared to the two we had in 2006. As I noted, no less than nine of these councils are located in Greater Western Sydney (GWS). However, the story of forecast growth in GWS does not end just with these “mega-councils”.
The table below shows the projected population increases and growth rates across the 14 GWS councils. In total, the BTS forecast predict that the region will grow by over a million people or over 58%, significantly higher than the projected Greater Metropolitan Area (GMA) growth rate of just under 38%. This will result in GWS having over 40% of the total metropolitan area population, compared with 35.5% in 2006.
It should be noted that the GMA includes the Hunter and Illawarra; if these are excluded, Greater Western Sydney would hold about half of Sydney’s population by 2036.
Not surprisingly, the councils with populations over 200,000 each will experience the lion’s share of the region’s growth and in fact the average size of a GWS council would be just over 209,000 by 2036. Five of these councils (Blacktown, Camden, Campbelltown, The Hills and Liverpool) will also experience growth rates above the metropolitan average – in the case of Camden, Liverpool and Blacktown, substantially so.
Of the five councils not expected to grow to over 200,000 by 2036, Auburn, Wollondilly and Hawkesbury will still experience growth rates above the Sydney average. Only Blue Mountains and Holroyd are expected to reach neither 200,000 nor an above-average growth rate, though Holroyd’s forecast growth rate is only just under the metropolitan average.
I’ll discuss the implications of the high rates of growth in Greater Western Sydney and elsewhere in a future post.