An aerial shot of works progressing at Spring Mountain.
An aerial shot of works progressing at Spring Mountain.

How smaller living will become a part of Ipswich's future

IPSWICH'S population is set to boom while estates and new housing developments are trending towards medium and high density living to keep up, according to a new report.

Ipswich City Council's March quarter Planning and Development report shows these great expectations reflected in the short term. In the three months between March and now Ipswich's population increased by about 2000.

Council's acting general manager for planning and regulatory services, Brett Davies said this is on target with expected growth.

"The population of the Ipswich local government area is expected to grow by almost 140 per cent - an extra 300,000 residents - to 520,000 people by 2041, from the current population of 220,000," he said.

The major growth in the region is in Spring Mountain with 176 new homes since December 2018 and 517 new residents. Redbank, Redbank Plains, Ripley and Ripley South follow closely behind.

"Part of this growth will continue within Springfield, but there are many other significant residential growth areas which will house our growing population, including Ripley, Walloon, Thagoona and around our existing railway stations," Mr Davey said.

"The amount of greenfield area left in Springfield is reducing as development occurs, but there is still some significant growth in this space as well as growth in the multiple residential sector and non-residential development."

Mr Davey said the current planning scheme, which came into effect in 2006 has provided strong guidelines for growth and acknowledged infrastructure is the next challenge to cater for the growing population.

"Our city planning has us in a good place to address this growth. Infrastructure is obviously a large challenge with a blend of infrastructure being provided through new infrastructure or upgrades to existing by council and developers.

"Importantly, infrastructure needs to be delivered at the right time, too early, and it may be underutilised, too late, and there may be issues.

The city's current planning scheme accommodates for townhouses and units, however market demands are dictating a greater volume, with parts of Springfield, Ripley and Raceview all earmarked for higher density living.

"The new planning scheme continues to identify areas that are suitable for medium to high density development, which are focused around existing or future services, including transport, employment and recreational opportunities," Mr Davey said.

"A successful city deal in particular could really change the market for multiple residential product."

This quarter developers have contributed to infrastructure, including 5km of local roads, 7.5km of bike and pathways, and about 2ha of recreational parks.

With a new planning scheme in its early stages, Mr Davey advises residents to consult drafts and engage with the process as early as possible to ensure needs are met.