Aerial view of Ballina Heights Estate
Aerial view of Ballina Heights Estate

MAP: Ballina suburb set for population boom, mayor says

UPDATE 5.02pm:

AN INFLUX of growth around the Ballina Shire has been predicted for the next Census after the most recent national data release revealed a significant increase in population growth for the area. 

Mayor, David Wright said Cumbalum, particularly Ballina Heights, had long been identified as a potential growth area.

He said the installation of basic infrastructure combined with Federal Government incentives available for first-home buyers proved an effective formula to drive growth.

"I don't think anyone expected (the Ballina Heights Estate) to take off like that," Cr Wright said.

Cr Wright predicted another large influx of home owners to move in as the estate continued to be developed.

"The next Census will show another 25% increase because its it is an area that's taking off," Cr Wright said.

Recent land releases at Lennox Head and Wollongbar were also tipped by town planner Damian Chappelle to drive up population numbers throughout the shire.

Residential sales consultant at First National Lismore, Ben Conte said sluggish growth in Lismore revealed in the Census was mainly due to a lack of land available to subdivide.

"If the council could change their attitudes towards development and growth that would help drive the town forward," Mr Conte said.

A shift in the council's attitudes had already begun according to Mr Chappelle, who listed numerous greenfield subdivisions, such as Pineapple and Invercauld Rd, earmarked for development post-2016 Census.

Nimbin and Kyogle had the slowest income growth of the 19 towns and suburbs analysed by The Northern Star with population declines of 11.5% and 13.9% respectively.

But similarly to Lismore, Mr Chappelle pointed to plans for a shopping centre and housing estate at Nimbin that might reverse the downward trend. 

FRIDAY, 5.30am: WHAT used to be a small estate on a hill has rapidly become one of the richest suburbs on the North Coast, new national data reveals.

Cumbalum, more commonly known as Ballina Heights, was recorded to have a median weekly household income of $1800 according to the latest Census data.

The family-friendly estate also recorded a 24.7% increase in population since the 2011 Census.

Celebrity hotspot, Lennox Head was the second richest area in our region with the weekly median household income sitting at a comfortable $1577.

But it was Suffolk Park that appeared to be attracting demographics with well-lined pockets.

The cruisey coastal village's median household income sky-rocket by 47% in the past four years since the 2011 Census to $1514.

Inland villages, such as Nimbin and Kyogle, had the slowest income growth and downturns in their community numbers with 11.5% and 13.9% population declines respectively.

RICH AND POOR

The three richest towns (based on median weekly income) were:

Cumbalum ($1800, up 29%)

Lennox Head ($1577, up 25%)

Suffolk Park ($1514, up 47%)

The three poorest towns were:

Nimbin ($651, up 6%)

Kyogle ($814, up 14%)

Ballina (Central) ($819, up 20%)

Strongest population growth

Cumbalum (1522 people, up 24.7%)

Mullumbimby (3596 people, up 13.4%)

Byron Bay (5521 people, ip 11.35)

Weakest population growth

Kyogle (2197 people, down 13.95)

Nimbin (1477 people, down 11.5%)

Skennars Head (1158 people, down 3%)

Note: Main regional centres and suburbs used