Redfern Street

Due to the presence of part of The University of Sydney main campus within the village boundaries, the largest employer within the village is the higher education and research sector.

Other significant sectors include white-collar industries such as creative industries and professional and business services, while the significant presence of transport and logistics speaks of the village’s industrial past.

On average, workers in the village tend to have high incomes, and a large proportion live in the City of Sydney and neighbouring local council areas. 

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Employment by industry

Table 9 summarises total employment in the village by each of the city-based industry sectors. The most dominant industry of employment in 2012 was higher education and research, which employed 22.7% of all workers.

This is mainly due to the location of part of The University of Sydney campus within the village. Other significant industries of employment included creative industries (14.5%), professional and business services (11.9%) and transport and logistics (10.5%).

Table 9 – Employment by City-Based Industry Sector, 2012

Sector Employment % of Total Employment
Community 835 4.8%
Creative Industries 2,501 14.5%
Finance and Financial Services 89 0.5%
Food and Drink 659 3.8%
Government 1,329 7.7%
Health 332 1.9%
Higher Education and Research 3,926 22.7%
ICT 1,013 5.9%
Life Science (Bio-tech) 57 0.3%
Manufacturing 192 1.1%
Motor Vehicle 126 0.7%
Natural Resource-Based Industries 0 0.0%
Other 141 0.8%
Professional and Business Services 2,048 11.9%
Property Development and Operation 167 1.0%
Retail and Personal Services 369 2.1%
Social Capital 804 4.7%
Tourist, Cultural and Leisure 873 5.1%
Transport and Logistics 1,812 10.5%
Utilities 3 0.0%
Total 17,276 100.0%

Source: Floor Space and Employment Survey, 2012 – City of Sydney

Income of workers

Journey to Work data produced by the Australian Bureau of Statistics can be analysed to show the weekly personal incomes of those who work in Redfern Street village. Chart 5 shows the personal income of workers within the village is focused on the middle to high income brackets, contrasting somewhat with the income profile of residents. The 2 highest proportions of workers within the village are in the 2 highest income groupings, with annual incomes in excess of $78,000. The relatively high proportion of professional workers within areas such as Australian Technology Park and academics at The University of Sydney will influence the proportion of workers with higher personal incomes.

Chart 5 – Workers' Personal Income (Annual)

Chart 5 – Workers' Personal Income (Annual)  

Workers’ place of residence

Chart 6 shows the local council area of residence for workers within Redfern Street village. It shows that a large proportion of the village workforce (21%) also lives within the City of Sydney local area. Significant proportions of residents also come from surrounding council areas such as Marrickville (7%) and Randwick (6%) as well as local council areas slightly further afield, such as Sutherland Shire (4%).

Chart 6 – Workers’ LGA of Residence (Top 10), 2011

Chart 6 – Workers’ LGA of Residence (Top 10), 2011  

Workers’ mode of transport

Journey to Work data can also be used to show the mode of transport used by village workers to get to work. As displayed in Chart 7, workers within Redfern Street village have a relatively high dependence on cars compared to the City of Sydney average, with 43% travelling to work in a private car. Trains also account for a high percentage of workers, with 22% of workers adopting this mode of transport to and from work. A higher proportion of workers within the village use bikes (3%) and walk to work (10%) than the City of Sydney average.

Chart 7 – Worker's Mode of Transport

Chart 7 – Worker's Mode of Transport  

Location of workers

Figure 10 shows the density of workers within Redfern Street village, as determined by the Floor Space and Employment Survey. It shows that significant areas of employment density exist at The University of Sydney, Carriageworks and Australian Technology Park.

Apart from these areas, the higher density employment appears to be located in the north-eastern quadrant of the village. The most dense employment areas are along Abercrombie, Regent and Lee streets to the west of the train line and off George, Pitt and Redfern streets to the east of Redfern railway station.

Figure 10 – Employment Density

Figure 10 – Employment Density  

What does this mean for my business?

Local workers are also often a key customer market for many businesses. In the case of Redfern Street village the presence of a significant academic workforce related to The University of Sydney will create some unique demands for goods and services. Analysis of the location and characteristics of the local workforce may assist retail and service providers in determining how best to benefit from this group of customers.

From an employer’s perspective, analysis of the existing village workforce is also useful. The presence of a significant academic and research workforce may therefore make this an appropriate place for complementary businesses to locate, such as private research institutes. Similarly the significant presence of creative industries and professional service workers suggests the village may be a preferred location for workers in these industries.


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