Canberra Population 2021

462,213
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Canberra's 2021 population is now estimated at 462,213. In 1950, the population of Canberra was 19,921. Canberra has grown by 4,883 since 2015, which represents a 1.07% 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 Canberra, which typically includes Canberra's population in addition to adjacent suburban areas.

Although Canberra is Australia's capital city, it is only the ninth largest city in the country. The latest census revealed that Canberra was home to 357,220 people in August 2011; an increase of just over 10% in just five years.

Canberra is a planned city that was not developed in one of Australia's states; it is located at the northern end of the Australian Capital Territory, a small territory developed to ensure that Australia's capital was not found in one of Australia's five states, thus providing its neutrality.

City Size

Canberra covers 814 square kilometers (314 square miles) of area. With a population estimate of 403,468 as of 2016, this gives a population density of 495.6 people residing per square kilometer.

Demographics of Canberra

When it comes to demographics, Canberra is pretty similar to other major Australian cities in some respects and very different in others.

71.4% of its residents were born in Australia, slightly higher than the national average of 70.3% – perhaps a reflection that Canberra is a Government town. The next largest nationality is English (3.7%) and Chinese (1.8%).

Canberra is, though, one of the few cities where the largest religious group is, in fact, the non-religious. 28.9% of Canberrans told census takers that they did not have a religion. This is slightly higher than the proportion of Catholics (26.1%) and twice the population of Anglicans (14.7%).

Incomes in Canberra are much higher than the national average. The average weekly wage for an Australian is $577, but in Canberra, the average income is $917. Residents of Canberra are also much better educated than the average Australian. 4.5% of people living in Canberra have a postgraduate degree, compared with an average of 1.8% in the country as a whole. Again, this reflects Canberra's status as the capital of Australia.

Population Growth

Canberra was chosen as the location for the nation's capital in 1908. In 1911, a pair of architects from Chicago, Illinois, USA was awarded the responsibility to design the blueprint of the city. By 1927, the Federal Parliament sat in their new offices for the first time.

In 1911, the city residents numbered just over 1,700, quickly growing to 9,000 by 1930. By 1971, the population first reached over 100,000. In 2000, the population reached over 300,000, and it continues to grow.

Canberra Population 2021

Year Population Growth Rate Growth
2035539,7731.06%5,641
2034534,1321.07%5,652
2033528,4801.08%5,672
2032522,8081.10%5,693
2031517,1151.12%5,718
2030511,3971.13%5,738
2029505,6591.15%5,744
2028499,9151.16%5,718
2027494,1971.16%5,656
2026488,5411.15%5,555
2025482,9861.13%5,419
2024477,5671.11%5,263
2023472,3041.09%5,110
2022467,1941.08%4,981
2021462,2131.07%4,883
2020457,3301.07%4,833
2019452,4971.07%4,805
2018447,6921.44%6,374
2017441,3181.44%6,282
2016435,0361.44%6,193
2015428,8431.44%6,096
2014422,7471.44%6,010
2013416,7371.44%5,916
2012410,8211.44%5,848
2011404,9731.83%7,281
2010397,6921.83%7,153
2009390,5391.83%7,016
2008383,5231.83%6,908
2007376,6151.83%6,775
2006369,8400.96%3,501
2005366,3390.95%3,455
2004362,8840.95%3,432
2003359,4520.95%3,394
2002356,0580.95%3,363
2001352,6952.63%9,040
2000343,6552.64%8,848
1999334,8072.64%8,609
1998326,1982.64%8,387
1997317,8112.64%8,160
1996309,6511.42%4,343
1995305,3081.42%4,266
1994301,0421.42%4,207
1993296,8351.42%4,142
1992292,6931.42%4,096
1991288,5972.24%6,334
1990282,2632.25%6,202
1989276,0612.24%6,057
1988270,0042.25%5,941
1987264,0632.25%5,801
1986258,2622.63%6,613
1985251,6492.63%6,438
1984245,2112.63%6,290
1983238,9212.63%6,120
1982232,8012.63%5,964
1981226,8371.77%3,952
1980222,8851.78%3,890
1979218,9951.77%3,816
1978215,1791.77%3,750
1977211,4291.77%3,679
1976207,7506.56%12,786
1975194,9646.56%12,007
1974182,9576.56%11,267
1973171,6906.55%10,559
1972161,1316.57%9,936
1971151,19510.12%13,895
1970137,30010.13%12,629
1969124,67110.12%11,453
1968113,21810.14%10,427
1967102,79110.13%9,455
196693,33610.57%8,925
196584,41110.56%8,062
196476,34910.59%7,311
196369,03810.58%6,603
196262,43510.57%5,970
196156,46510.27%5,257
196051,20810.29%4,779
195946,42910.28%4,327
195842,10210.28%3,924
195738,17810.26%3,554
195634,62410.29%3,231
195531,39310.28%2,926
195428,4679.38%2,442
195326,0259.30%2,215
195223,8109.34%2,033
195121,7779.32%1,856
195019,9210.00%

Canberra Population Data (Urban Area)

Name 2021 Population 2021 Growth
Melbourne5,061,4391.89%
Sydney4,991,6541.33%
Brisbane2,439,4671.38%
Perth2,067,3331.24%
Adelaide1,345,4450.68%
Gold Coast710,6501.63%
Canberra462,2131.07%
Newcastle453,5150.70%
Sunshine Coast353,2811.86%
Central Coast336,7140.54%
Wollongong307,4770.70%

Other Cities in Australia

  1. Australian Bureau of Statistics - Canberra 2016 Census QuickStats
  2. Australian Bureau of Statistics - Australian Capital Territory Summary
  3. World Urbanization Prospects - United Nations population estimates and projections of major Urban Agglomerations

Sources