Townsville is a city located in Queensland, Australia and is the largest urban area located north of the Sunshine Coast. Townsville is the unofficial capital of North Queensland.
With a population of 182,920 as of June 2022, it is the largest settlement in North Queensland and is unofficially considered its capital. The city hosts a significant number of governmental, community and major business administrative offices for the northern half of the state.
Townsville is located in the dry tropics region of Queensland, adjacent to the central section of the Great Barrier Reef. The city is also a major industrial centre, home to one of the world’s largest zinc refineries, a nickel refinery and many other similar activities. As of December 2020, $30M operations to expand the Port of Townsville are underway, which involve channel widening and installation of a 70-tonne Liebherr Super Post Panamax Ship-to-Shore crane, to allow much larger cargo and passenger ships to utilise the port. It is an increasingly important port due to its proximity to Asia and major trading partners such as China.
City Size and Population Density
The estimated population of Townsville is about 190,000 people, and the population density is about 1061 people per square kilometer or 2750 people per square mile. The city proper is 54.1 square miles in area. The urban area expands the city size to 693.3 kilometers squared (267.7 square miles).
Townsville also has many suburbs. The city has 43 urban suburbs, 5 suburbs on Magnetic Island, 12 suburbs in the Northern beaches, and 38 rural suburbs.
The percentage of males to females in Townsville is almost 50/50. 49.9 percent of the population is male, while 50.1 percent of the population is female. The median age of residents is 33 years while 21.1% of the population is 0-14 years of age and 9.8% of the population is over 65. 44.1% of the population is married and 39.4% were never married. That leaves 12.4% of the population that are separated or divorced and the rest are widowed.
The most common ancestry in Townsville is Australian at 30.7% followed by English at 27.4%. There is also a large Irish population at 8.7%, Scottish at 7%, and German at 4.1%. The most common country of birth is Australia at 80.2% of the population.
In Townsville, the most popular religious affiliation is Catholic at 28.1% and is followed by no religious affiliation at 21.9%. The next three most common religions are Anglican at 18.2%, Uniting Church at 6.5% and Presbyterian at 3.6%.
87.5% of residents said they speak only English in the home. 8.3% said there are two or more languages spoken in the home. The most popular second languages are Italian, Tagalog, German, Greek, and Filipino in that order.
The unemployment rate in Townsville is around 5% and 63% of residents are employed full time, 25.5% are employed part time, and 6.4% are away from work. The median weekly income for single people is $675 and the median weekly income for families is $1,626.
The family composition of Townsville is 37.8% couples without children, 43.5% couples with children, 16.9% single parent families, and 1.8% families classified as other. The percentage of people living in single-family dwellings is 80.7%. People who live in Semi-detached houses and town houses comprise 5.6% of the population, while 12.6% live in apartments.
Townsville Population Growth
The population of Townsville is younger than the averages for both Queensland and Australia.
This is partly due to a high turnover in the population. As a hub for government services and defence force operations in the north, the nature of short to medium term roles associated with these sectors heavily influence local data.
The city is also a hub for mineworkers who live in the city intermittently. Fly-in/fly-out mine workers, who do not relocate thier families to regional centers work to slow the development of a city.
Townsville has a favourable reputation as a family friendly location and continues to grow at a rate of around 2-3%. Although this rate of growth may be percieved as slow, it is still faster than the overall growth rate of Queensland.