Green Square and City South

Green Square and City South is the fastest growing village in the City of Sydney and in 2014 it was one of the most populous, with an estimated 23,615 residents.

The majority of these residents live in high density apartment buildings that have been recently constructed as part of the Green Square urban renewal project.

Average household income is 14.4% above the Metro Sydney average, with incomes distributed in the medium to high range. There is also a significant foreign-born population, as the area is popular with Asian migrants in particular. 

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Recent population growth

The resident population of Green Square and City South was estimated by id Forecast to be 23,615 in 2014 (Chart 2). This makes it the fastest growing village in the City of Sydney, with population increasing at an annual rate of 6.0% since 2006. This is significantly higher than the City of Sydney local area average of 1.9% per annum over the same period.

As shown in Figure 3, population density is currently quite low throughout the village. One notable exception is the area bounded by Lachlan Street and the Eastern Distributor and the area between Joynton Avenue and Joynton Park, which is the Victoria Square development, an early precursor to the Green Square urban renewal project. Another significant pocket of density lies to the west of Joynton Park. As the urban renewal project is completed, much of the area to the north and south of this area will also be densified.

Chart 2 – Estimated Resident Population

Chart 2 – Estimated Resident Population

Figure 3 – Population Density, 2011

Figure 3 – Population Density, 2011


Table 1 summarises some of the key demographic characteristics of village residents, with the following key points noted:

  • Median household income is high compared to the City of Sydney local area median and the broader Metro Sydney median.
  • Average age is below the City of Sydney local area and Metro Sydney benchmarks, reflecting the young professional and student communities.
  • Average household size is larger than the City of Sydney local area average, reflecting both the larger size of older housing stock, and the fact that new apartments in this area tend to be larger than in developments closer to the city centre.
  • A large number of residents were born overseas (53%), highlighting the cultural diversity of the village with a large Chinese community.
  • There are a high number of family and group households compared to the City of Sydney average, reflecting the larger size of housing in the village. However, singles and couples with no children still make up the majority of households.

Chart 3 shows the distribution of household incomes for Green Square and City South, and compares this to income distributions for the City of Sydney local area and Metro Sydney. Green Square and City South has a higher proportion of middle to high income earners, with above average representation in the income categories between $52,000 and $208,000 per year.

Chart 3 – Household Income Distribution, 2011

Chart 3 – Household Income Distribution, 2011

Figure 4 shows average household income by block across the village. Higher average household incomes are located north of McEvoy Street near Waterloo Park, and in the north-east corner around Bourke Street and Phillip Street. There are also pockets of high income households between Euston Road and Bourke Road in the south of the village, however these areas are still predominantly light industrial and the average figures are likely to be skewed by a small number of households in boutique apartment developments.

Figure 4 – Average Household Income, 2011

Figure 4 – Average Household Income, 2011

Table 1 – Key Demographic Indicators, 2011

Green Square & City South City of Sydney Metro Sydney

Median Household Income

$96,725 $84,941 $75,451

Av. Age

33.3 36.1 37.1

Av. Household Size

2.2 1.9 2.7

% White Collar Workers

85% 87% 74%

% Born Overseas

53% 49% 36%


Bachelor Degree or Higher*

44% 48% 27%

Studying at University/TAFE

16% 17% 8%

Housing Status


14% 14% 31%


35% 24% 36%

Renter - Public

2% 10% 5%

Renter - Private

49% 51% 27%

Household Structure

Couples with No Kids

31% 28% 24%

Families (inc single parent)

26% 18% 49%


28% 40% 23%


16% 14% 4%

Source: Census of Population and Housing, 2011 – ABS

Resident retail spending

Chart 4 illustrates the estimated retail spending per capita for village residents in 2012, based on Marketinfo modelling. Residents in Green Square and City South spend an above average amount for all categories bar ‘bulky goods when compared to Metro Sydney. However when compared to retail spending in the City of Sydney local area, they spend less in all categories except apparel.

Spending is most notably higher when compared to Metro Sydney in the food catering category, which includes all restaurants and take-away food. This is catered for by the burgeoning restaurant and café industry within the village.

Spending on bulky goods is lower due to the large number of residents living in apartments/units. This type of dwelling provides less room for these goods. It should however be noted that this figure is based on a simulation, and may not fully account for the fact that a large portion of the residents have recently moved into the area. This may cause a temporary spike in bulky goods spending amongst residents.

Chart 4 – Resident Retail Spending Per Capita, 2012

Chart 4 – Resident Retail Spending Per Capita, 2012  

What does this mean for my business?

The local resident population is an important consideration for many local business operators. For many retailers, local residents are a core part of their market and a key source of repeat business. For all types of businesses, local residents can comprise a significant portion of the workforce.

The rapid expansion of the population in this village has provided many businesses with unique opportunities to tap into a growth market. The success of many new cafés and restaurants is a testament to the demand being generated by working-age professionals with high disposable incomes who are moving into the area. However it would appear that the area is still under-catered in many respects, with many residents still complaining about the lack of retail and dining facilities in the area.

The growth in the village resident population will also support non-retail businesses who may want to locate in the area, in that it is becoming a more attractive location for employees.


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: Tuesday, 16 June 2015