Chinatown and CBD South

Chinatown and CBD South

Local area profile for business

The bustling village area of Chinatown and CBD South is one of the most centrally located and accessible in the City of Sydney local area.

The multicultural atmosphere of the area is enhanced by a significant number of overseas-born residents, including significant Chinese, Korean and Indonesian communities.

There is also a large student population due to the close proximity of many major educational institutions.

The busy streets of Chinatown and Darling Harbour waterfront are home to numerous retail and dining businesses, along with significant entertainment facilities and tourist attractions.

Due to its central location, the village attracts a large population of well-paid office workers, and is also a significant location for tourism activity.

View the visitor score cards for the area.

The economic profile summaries below link to more detailed information.


Chinatown and CBD South is centrally located within the City of Sydney, covering the suburb of Haymarket.

The area is characterised by high-rise apartment buildings and office towers, however open space is also provided in local parks and around Darling Harbour.

Its central location and significant public transport infrastructure make it one of the most accessible areas in the City of Sydney.

What do residents like about their village?

  • Proud of its culture and traditions and wanting to share it with the rest of Sydney.
  • Friendly, multicultural, many shops locally, a lot of transport.
Source: City of Sydney Resident Consultations


Residents live almost exclusively in apartment buildings, a significant number of which are student accommodation buildings.

The large number of students living in the area means that the village median age and weekly household income is relatively lower compared to other village areas in the city.

Population (2018)* 22,218
Median Weekly Household Income (2016)** $1,696
Median Age (2016)** 28
Studying at Uni/TAFE (2016)** 25.9%

*Estimate Resident Population generated by .id
**2016 ABS Census of Population and Housing


There are a significant number of food and drink, and retail businesses located in the bustling streets of Chinatown and the Darling Harbour tourism and entertainment precinct. Larger professional service firms also have a significant presence.

Employing Businesses
Employing Businesses (2017) 3,135
Top 3 Sectors by Number of Employing Businesses Food & Drink (21.4%) Retail & Personal Services (17.5%) Professional & Business Services (16.4%)
Proportion of Employing Businesses with less than 20 Employees 89.4%

Source: Floor Space and Employment Survey, 2017 – City of Sydney


The village has a large workforce, predominantly in the finance and professional services sectors, due to its city centre location. The prevalence of these white-collar professions means that average worker incomes are high, and this supports a number of local businesses in the village.

Workers (2017) 65,950
Top 3 Sectors by Number of Workers Finance & Financial Services (18%) Government (17%) Professional & Business Services (13.6%)

Source: Floor Space and Employment Survey, 2017 – City of Sydney

Visitor and customers

Visitation to the village is highest on weekday evenings, driven by diners and workers having after-work drinks. The significant supply of tourist accommodation and attractions within the village mean that this market segment is also a significant contributor to the village economy.

Hotel Rooms (2017)

5,102 (25% of city total)

Serviced Apartments (2017)

2,038 (35.1% of city total)

Backpacker Beds (2017)

2,918 (37.8% of city total)

Source: Floor Space and Employment Survey, 2017 – City of Sydney

Future Outlook

Continued development in the village will underpin future growth in the resident population and workforce. Significant infrastructure projects will also improve accessibility and drive further visitation through new attractions.

Forecast Average Growth
Average annual change
Residents* 2.9%
Workers** 1.7%

*Source: id Population Forecast
**Source: City-based estimates

Your village contacts
City of Sydney
Business Precinct Coordinator
Haymarket Chamber of Commerce
President: Simon Chan
  • PO Box 20702
    World Square NSW 2002


This information has been compiled from various sources. The publisher and contributors accept no responsibility for any injury, loss or damage arising from the use, error or omissions therein. While all care is taken to ensure a high degree of accuracy, users are invited to notify the City of Sydney of any discrepancies. No part of this information, including maps or data, may be reproduced without written permission.

Last updated: Friday, 14 February 2020