10 million people in Vic by 2051

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Last week the Victorian Gov’t released Victoria in Future 2015″ which is the official state government projection of population and households from 2011 to 2051. You may have read a related article in The Age on Saturday as well.

It forecasts there will be a natural increase of 1.7 million people (3.7m births less 2m deaths) plus 2.8m net migration (2.7m from overseas and 100k interstate), to take Victoria’s population from 5.5 million in 2011 to 10 million in 2051. It also forecasts nearly 8 million will be in Melbourne. Where is everyone going to live I hear you ask?

Melbourne and Sydney are the big migration magnets and the residential housing market is working hard to keep up. A major concern however is Melbourne’s transport infrastructure. When you hear stories of people driving to park at a train station several stops up the line, just so they can actually get on the train, you know there are serious problems. With 180 level crossings in Melbourne’s rail network, putting on more trains is just going to make road congestion worse. So the state government’s initiative to remove 50 level crossings will be a very important investment. Ironically, watch for the residential development that will occur on the real estate that is freed up around these sites. This will help fund the works which is a smart move. Before 2051, I suspect we are going to need to remove many more level crossings.

We have opined several times on the rapidly diminishing stigma of apartment living for high end accommodation and how we are only catching up with international norms. These latest population forecasts will see apartment living more normalised and not just around the CBD and inner areas. The demand for accommodation will see higher and higher density development in the more outer suburbs, and especially around transport nodes.

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