The inner North: most favoured by Urban Melbourne readers

It appears the 'wrong side of the Yarra, right side of Maribyrnong' encompassing Fitzroy, Carlton, Brunswick, North Melbourne and Northcote has been chosen as the region where most Urban Melbourne readers would like to live or own a property.  The centre of the city and inner South round out the most popular regions of Melbourne respectively.  

That's the conclusion drawn from our ongoing Effective Measure reader surveys that are now in their third month.

The large amount of investment - both in infrastructure and residential construction - currently being funneled into Footscray does not appear to sway Urban Melbourne readers as only 15% of Urban Melbourne's audience selected inner West.  The inner East including Richmond - the suburb which lead the inner-city gentrification through the early 90s - appears to be off the boil with only 33% of the Urban Melbourne audience selecting it in the multi-choice question.

We did attempt to correlate any kind of relationship with the number of projects we're tracking on our database with the survey responses however we came up empty.

The total projects we're tracking in Fitzroy, Carlton, Collingwood, Northcote, Brunswick and East Brunswick rounds out to 46.  The inner South representing South Yarra, Prahran, St Kilda, South Melbourne and Port Melbourne totals 59.  

The centre of the city - Melbourne (postcodes 3000 and 3004), Docklands and Southbank - totals a mammoth 77 projects.

The data provided by Effective Measure breaks down the responses in to gender categories - Urban Melbourne's total audience gender breakdown is 75% male, 25% female.

Amongst males, the inner North again came out on top whilst female readers nominated the centre of the City as their most desirable place to live or own a property. 

It mightn't come as any surprise that the outer suburbs barely registered on the survey and it appears Urban Melbourne might have a small tree-changer following with 13% of audience share allocated to a rural area / other regional city in Victora.

So what is it that makes the inner North a favourite of Urban Melbourne readers?  

Truth be known, there was no specific purpose in asking the question on the survey - we thought we'd just throw it out there but it has given the editors some ideas for the next round of surveys which will be rolled out soon.

Perhaps this is a good time to disclaim that both Urban Melbourne editors currently live on 'the wrong side of the Yarra, but right side of the Maribyrnong' - one is a native of the region, the other a 'migrant' from the outer South East.  

We're very much interested in having a discussion on why the inner North has come up trumps, so feel free to leave a comment in the box provided below.


The question asked:  Which of the following areas would you find most desirable to live, invest or own a property in (choose a maximum of 3)?

Region Audience Share Male Female
Inner North (Fitzroy, Carlton, Brunswick, Northcote, North Melbourne) 57% 60% 43%
The Centre of the City (CBD, Southbank, Docklands) 52% 51% 57%
Inner South (South Melbourne, Port Melbourne, South Yarra, St. Kilda, Fishermans Bend) 45% 46% 43%
Inner East (Richmond, Hawthorn/Glenferrie) 33% 34% 29%
Inner West (Footscray, Yarraville, Maribyrnong) 15% 15% 14%
A rural area / other regional city or town in Victoria 13% 11% 21%
Middle ring of suburbs - North or West of the Yarra (Coburg, Thornbury, Moonee Ponds, Essendon, Heidelberg, Williamstown) 11% 12% 8%
Middle ring of suburbs - South or East of the Yarra (Sandringham, Elsternwick, Moorabbin, Caulfield, Oakleigh, Camberwell, Doncaster) 10% 9% 14%
The urban heart of a regional city (Bendigo, Ballarat, Geelong)  7% 6% 7%
Outer ring of Suburbs - South or East of the Yarra 4% 4% 1%
Outer ring of Suburbs - North or West of the Yarra 1% 1% 1%

To see the rest of our demographic data captured through the user surveys, you can view it on our recently published Media Kit located here.



Peter Maltezos's picture

Not surprised at all about the results! smiley

LOL at Outer ring of Suburbs results as low as 1%

I collect, therefore I am.

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Bilby's picture

There's nothing surprising about this for me, either. Culturally, the inner north is still a hub of creativity in Melbourne, and it's reputation as the home of Melbourne's students, bohemians and intelligentsia is well deserved. Today the area is increasingly well educated and middle class. Together, these are also the groups that share an intense interest in architecture, aesthetics, the social life of the city and the life of the streets (statistically speaking). Notably, compared with the south side and the eastern suburbs, the inner north has a higher concentration of tertiary educated people than anywhere else in Melbourne. Speaking for myself, the inner north is the last refuge in Melbourne where I would even consider living. The Docklands is an unmitigated planning disaster and one of the most unwelcoming and uninteresting urban areas I have ever had the misfortune to come into contact with. The CBD is also slowly ebbing away in terms of livability, heritage and human scale. Without more consideration for the quality of streetscapes, street level activity and the aesthetics of city buildings (including the restoration and/or adaptive reuse of heritage places, inside and out), Melbourne will continue to erode the very things that have drawn people to it to live. Will this fate also befall the inner north? It seems that one of the lessons planners have failed to learn is that heritage shopping strips (like Smith Street, Fitzroy, Swan Street Richmond and Sydney Rd., Brunswick) are of immense value to the economy in terms of attracting and sustaining a wide variety of businesses and creative industries. The key issue of importance here is not merely maintaining heritage facades or the illusion of a historic streetscape, but actually retaining substantial built heritage in three dimensions. The historic fabric of the buildings of the inner north continues to attract businesses and residents - not the mere appearance of heritage. Arguably, in terms of housing, this is less crucial, but there is good evidence to suggest that creative businesses want to be sited where there is access to smaller, often heritage, buildings with genuine character and history. With our unique shopping strips now subject to commercial zoning allowing multi-storey residential in combination with 'locked up' neighbourhood residential zones behind them, we have a recipe for the destruction of much of what makes the inner north great, putting increasing pressure on some of our most important historic neighbourhood assets.

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Nicholas Harrison's picture

Bloody hipsters :-)

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Mark Baljak's picture

Alastair, it should read

Right side of the Yarra, right side of the Maribyrnong...

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Alastair Taylor's picture

Nope, still can't bring myself to say it.

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