Brisbane residents embrace city living

November 2, 2005

Brisbane is rivalling Sydney and Melbourne as a capital that strongly embraces city living, says leading demographer Bernard Salt.

Mr Salt said the Queensland capital's population within a five-kilometre radius of the CBD had skyrocketed since the turn of the century, to top 194,981 last year.

He said the number of residents occupying the same land mass in Sydney and Melbourne reached 311,611 and 210,440 respectively in 2004, but growth had slowed since their inner-city booms began in the early 90s.

Melbourne-based Mr Salt branded Brisbane a "Cinderella city" because its phenomenal growth had brought job prosperity and a thriving cafe, restaurant and entertainment scene.

His comments coincided with the release of his new book Cinderella City - A Vision of Brisbane's Rise to Prominence.

"Brisbane has fundamentally shifted over the last decade - it is no longer a flat, suburban, mono-cultural city that was probably worthy of the parody term 'Brisvegas'," Mr Salt said.

"Brisvegas has morphed into the new Brisbane or the Cinderella city ... this is the ugly duckling that has blossomed as a consequence of quite a significant demographic, cultural shift over the last decade.

"You now have a new demographic - a young, hip, groovy generation X-er that is more inclined to remain locally than be attracted to other cities down south."

Mr Salt said the now-cosmopolitan city's population growth - largely fuelled by interstate migration - had outpaced every other Australian capital for 15 consecutive years.

He said the city also boasted the nation's fastest growing job market, which ballooned 12.8 per cent between 2001 to 2004 to reach 889,957 jobs.

In contrast, Sydney's employment's sector increased by only 2.6 per cent while Melbourne's spiked five per cent in the same time frame.

Mr Salt also said major businesses including Virgin Blue, Boeing, Suncorp and Xstrata were based in Brisbane and the city was home to many of the nation's wealthiest people.

"It can also be argued that Brisbane's embrace of the inner-city is more significant than similar shifts in Sydney and Melbourne because the Brisbane shift has been leveraged off a lower and prevailingly suburban base," Mr Salt said.

© 2005 AAP
Brought to you by aap

Subscribe to The Age and save up to 35%*

The Age 404 Page

JavaScript disabled. Please enable JavaScript to use My News, My Clippings, My Comments and user settings.

New feature Personalise your news, save articles to read later and customise settings View Demo

Hi there! Beta version

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

We could not find the page you requested. This is either because:

  • there's an error in the address or link,
  • due to a technical fault it has not been properly published,
  • it is an older article that has been removed from our site.
[an error occurred while processing this directive]