Adelaide Population 2018

Adelaide is the 5th most populous city in Australia and the capital of South Australia, located on the Adelaide Plains between the Gulf of St Vincent and the Mount Lofty Ranges. Named in honor of Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen, the city was founded as a planned capital in the 19th century.

Size and Density of Adelaide

The Adelaide metropolitan area has an estimated population of 1.33 million in 2017 (over a total area of 3,257 square kilometers), while the City of Adelaide has a population of around 23,000 (over a total area of 15.57 square kilometers).

About three-quarters of the population of South Australia lives in the Adelaide metropolitan area.

Adelaide Demographics

The foreign-born population of the city is about 30%, with large Italian and Greek communities in the east and west suburbs of Fulham, West Lakes, Newton, Payneham, Campbelltown and Torrensville. There are substantial Vietnamese populations in the northwest and northern suburbs of Athol Park, Mansfield Park, Pooraka, Woodville and others. Immigrants from Sri Lanka and India are concentrated in the inner suburbs such as Enfield, Kilburn and Park Holme.

Recently, suburbs in the north and West have experienced substantial migration from Iran and Afghanistan. Chinese immigrants have largely settled in the northeastern and eastern communities.

The largest communities of foreign-born residents of Adelaide originate from England (7%), Italy (1.5%), India (1.5%) China (1.4%) and Vietnam (1%).

While Adelaide was founded on religious tolerance, attracting many religious people and earning it the nickname "The City of Churches," about one-third of the population now has no religious affiliation, which makes Adelaide one of the least religious cities in the country.

English is a language often used in Adelaide, as well as Italian and Greek.

Adelaide History

Prior to becoming a British settlement in 1836, the Adelaide area was inhabited by the indigenous Kaurna Aboriginal people. South Australia was proclaimed a British colony in 1836 with the city's layout based on the Sicilian city of Catania. The city was established as a planned colony of free immigrants with promised freedom of religion and liberties. Based on the ideas of Edward Gibbon Wakefield, land was sold by the government at a price high enough to be unaffordable to journeymen and laborers, which means Adelaide does not have the convict settlement history of other cities in Australia. Although, Edward Wakefield served time for crimes and it has been found that two officers and a mayor at different points were escaped convicts.

After years of struggle, Adelaide eventually began to prosper and, by 1856, it was a self-governing colony. Electricity was introduced in 1900 and the city had a post-war boom after World War I that was followed by droughts and the Depression. It was slowly transformed from an agriculture-based economy to a modern city with many transformed pre-war factories.

Adelaide Population Growth

Over the past decade, certain areas of Adelaide have grown faster than others, particularly Golden Grove and Mawson Lakes. According to a leading demographer of Australia, South Australia's population growth rate has been very rapid. As it stands now, many new migrants initially come to South Australian regions like Adelaide first, eventually leaving for larger cultural communities further into the country.

In 2013, South Australia's population grew 0.9%, which is much faster than many countries although it still lags behind almost every other Australian state, largely due to geography.

Adelaide Population in 2018Source: By Adam.J.W.C. [CC BY-SA 2.5 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5)], from Wikimedia Commons

Adelaide Population Data (Urban Area)

Year Population Growth Rate (%) Growth
20351,553,0361.08%81,511
20301,471,5251.10%78,582
20251,392,9430.83%56,540
20201,336,4030.61%16,080
20181,320,3230.94%36,518
20151,283,8051.00%62,166
20101,221,6391.13%66,776
20051,154,8630.59%33,290
20001,121,5730.18%9,908
19951,111,6650.55%30,080
19901,081,5851.11%57,849
19851,023,7361.05%51,902
1980971,8340.91%43,234
1975928,6001.78%78,505
1970850,0954.06%153,286
1965696,8094.03%124,987
1960571,8222.83%74,576
1955497,2462.98%67,969
1950429,2770.00%
Adelaide Population Growth

Adelaide's 2018 population is now estimated at 1,320,323. In 1950, the population of Adelaide was 429,277. Adelaide has grown by 36,518 since 2015, which represents a 0.94% annual change. These population estimates and projections come from the latest revision of the UN World Urbanization Prospects. These estimates represent the Urban agglomeration of Adelaide, which typically includes Adelaide's population in addition to adjacent suburban areas.

Data Sources
  1. Australian Bureau of Statistics - Regional Population Growth, Adelaide, South Australia, Census 2015-16
  2. Sustainable Population Australia - Australia's population overview
  3. .ID The Population Experts - Demographic insights and resources
  4. World Urbanization Prospects - United Nations population estimates and projections of major Urban Agglomerations