Can the history of Rockingham help us understand the future?

Simone - Myth Buster

Simone has a rich background in human geography, demography and urban planning – a background that was useful in her previous roles in the Commonwealth and State Governments, and now as part of the forecast team at .id. From the Queensland coast to the southern suburbs of Perth, Simone produces population and dwelling forecasts that help local governments make informed decisions about future service and planning needs. She is a regular contributor to .id’s blog and has spoken at several conferences on how our cities and regions are changing. She is a big advocate of evidence-based planning and how Census and other data can inform this. Outside of work Simone is a keen traveller and photographer – interests that tie in well with her professional life and help her to understand “place”.

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5 Responses

  1. Beth Dungey says:

    A very interesting write up on Rockingham. What you may not realise is that Rockingham circa 1960s and 70s (and probably even earlier) was a beach holiday destination for Perth. A number of Perth families had holiday homes (fibro shacks) along or close to the foreshore in Rockingham or Shoalwater. So they would vacate Perth and head down to Rockingham (and beach) for the long summer holidays or for summer weekends. That pretty much explains the early development being within walking distance of the beach. Rockingham, like other beach holiday destinations in Perth (e.g. City Beach, Mandurah) has become part of the suburban sprawl as Perth has grown over the years.

  2. Simone says:

    Hi Beth,

    Thanks for your comment. I did know that Rockingham had a past life as a holiday destination – in fact even today when you drive around some of the streets closer to the beach you can tell that there are still holiday homes around. A quick look at the Census data also shows that some suburbs in Rockingham have higher dwelling vacancy rates so that’s another indication. Other Australian cities have their own equivalents eg the northern beaches of Sydney. All part of our ever evolving cities and regions!

  3. Len Sargant says:

    My daughter, son-in -law and family moved to Port Kennedy some 7 to 8 years ago. They recently purchased a property and live in Lakelands which is about 10 mins by road north from Mandurah.. My son-in-law is a bricklayer and has never been out of work. He also did some time as FIFO but has since returned to the trade. There are whole suburbs pegged out for future development and have been for some time. I expect that depending on economic progress, future population numbers will grow much faster than present data indicates. Merry Christmas and I look forward to your useful and interesting articles in 2016

  4. Thanks Len. We recently updated Rockingham’s forecast and there is certainly a lot of construction going on at the moment and a lot of development in the pipeline. It’ll be interesting to see what happens in the next few years because there are macro level trends in WA that will impact on the numbers at smaller areas of geography such as LGAs, especially in terms of population gain from interstate and overseas migration. From a professional perspective I’m looking forward to the release of LGA population data from the ABS for the year ended June 2015 to see how this pans out numerically (probably the end of March/beginning of April).

  5. Michael says:

    Also in the 1960s Rockingham was on the Urban/country boundary and whilst it was against the law to purchase alcohol in the city on a Sunday – all one need do was to go for a Sunday drive to Rockingham (very little traffic), and have a drink while the kids enjoyed the beach.

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