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Melbourne on top in HIA hotspot report

By Tim Neary
26 April 2019 | 9 minute read
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Melbourne has once again dominated this year’s HIA hotspots report, with 12 of Australia’s top 20 building growth areas all located around Victoria’s capital.

The HIA Population & Residential Building Hotspots Report for 2019 has revealed Australia’s strongest markets for home building, and Melbourne has come up trumps.

The report provides a ranking of Australia’s top 20 hotspots, as well as individual rankings for each of the states and territories. Of the national top 20, 12 are in Victoria, five are in Queensland and three are in NSW.

HIA chief economist Tim Reardon said that an area qualifies as a hotspot if at least $150 million worth of residential building work was approved during the 2017–18 financial year, and its rate of population growth is faster than the 1.6 per cent national average.

He said that the report is aimed at finding employment growth areas targeted towards builders and tradies.

“The majority of the growth is in the fringe of Melbourne as the city expands, although inner-city suburbs such as Southbank and Docklands are also enjoying strong growth as they change to accommodate higher density living,” he said.

“This is not surprising given the significant investment in infrastructure and the region’s growing professional services sector.”

“The Rockbank – Mount Cottrell area, located west of Melbourne near Melton, is Australia’s number one hotspot, with population growth of 59.4 per cent during 2017–18 and $224.2 million in building approvals.”


Mr Reardon said that major infrastructure projects, including upgrades to the train station and train lines as well as a new six-lane arterial road, are expected to maintain momentum in the area.

“Last year’s number one hotspot, Mickleham – Yuroke, north of Melbourne’s Tullamarine airport, has slipped to second place, and Pimpama in Queensland’s Gold Coast dropped into third place.”

Mr Reardon said that the remainder of the top 20 hotspots are located in Queensland and NSW, predominantly in areas surrounding the capital cities, Sydney and Brisbane.

“Because the residential building industry is cooling, the number of future hotspots is likely to be more centralised to major capital cities such as Melbourne and Sydney,” he said.

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