Hamilton’s population and economy steams ahead
Hamilton’s population is growing at a rate more than 30% faster than the New Zealand average, supporting economic growth and heightened construction activity.
Population data released yesterday by Stats NZ shows the city’s population to June this year is estimated at 169,500, an increase of around 3600 people from the same time in 2018. The city’s population grew 2.2%, against a national average of 1.6%.
Jen Baird, Hamilton City Council’s General Manager Growth, says the revised figures illustrate the importance of the city’s investment in enabling planned, sustainable and quality growth.
“Our current 10-Year Plan has a $2B investment in strategic infrastructure, more transport options and looking after what we have,” Ms Baird says.
“People talk about building the city of the future, but you have to realise the future isn’t just years away, it’s next year, next week or tomorrow. Managed well, growth is great. It brings new jobs, new investment and new diversity to our city. The work we’re doing is to make room for growth while retaining the liveability of Hamilton.
“People want to live, work, play and do business here. Spending in our central city is up, more businesses are opening and we’re getting more visitors. Hamilton is buzzing,” she says.
Hamilton’s economic growth continued to improve in the year to June 2019, with its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) up 2.6% on the year earlier, continuing a trend of beating the national average. Provisional GDP for the city was $8,210 million.
Hamilton’s growth underpins strong regional growth – the Waikato (2.1%) was one of five regions with population growth at a greater rate than the NZ average. Northland led regional population growth with a 2.3% increase, with Waikato second and the other three regions being Bay of Plenty, Otago and Canterbury.
Hamilton had the ninth-highest growth in residential consents lodged over the June 2019 year. Residential consents were 36% higher over the June 2019 year, with 397 consents in the last quarter alone – significantly higher than the 10-year average of 244 consents.
The Stats NZ data also shows Hamilton remains the youngest of New Zealand’s 67 territorial authorities by median age, with an average age of 32.3 years. Near neighbours Thames-Coromandel District has the highest median age at 54 years.