Growth Areas

More than five million people live in the fast-growing suburbs on the outskirts of our capital cities. We produce 13% of Australia’s jobs and 11% of GDP. Another 2.5 million people are expected to be living in fast-growing outer suburbs by 2031.

Member Councils of the National Growth Areas Alliance are united by shared
experiences of:

  • Population growth rates at more than double the national average
  • Inadequate infrastructure to cope with the increased demand
  • Long-term lack of Federal government investment in roads, public transport and essential services.

What do we mean by ‘outer suburbs’?

Probably not what you’re thinking. Places you may consider ‘country towns’ are these days operating as outer suburbs. They are located beyond established transport routes, and they need more jobs, services, schools and hospitals than the local area is providing. For example, it’s 84km from the Sydney GPO to the new suburb of Wilton in the Shire of Wollondilly. It's 65km from Melbourne GPO to new estates on the edge of Pakenham in Cardinia Shire Council.

Community Profile of Growth Areas

The National Growth Areas Alliance Community Profile provides demographic analysis for the Region and its suburbs based on results from the 2021, 2019, 2016, 2011, 2006, 2001, 1996 and 1991 Censuses of Population and Housing. The profile is updated with population estimates when the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) releases new figures.

Growth Areas Community Profile
Key Facts and Figures on Australia's Growth Areas
Population size (2021)

5.3 million

1 in 5 Australians call the fast growing outer suburbs home

Population growth (2016-21)


More than double the annual average growth rate of Australia (1.2%)



18.7% of Australia’s workforce. UP from 14% in 2006