Current projections indicate that the population in Regional Victoria will grow from 1.4 million to 2.1 million by 2051.
While the overall population of our regional communities will remain modest compared to Greater Melbourne, our regions have seen major changes over the last 30 years and they are likely to keep changing. Simple farming practices and small townships have been transformed by technology, global trade, environmental management and climate change. These and other factors have led to the emergence of a few dominant regional towns and the beginnings of major urban cities including Geelong, Ballarat and Bendigo. Between 2011 and 2031, these three largest regional districts by population are projected to account for approximately half of the population growth across all of Victoria’s regions.
The ten local government areas we have focused on are home to the largest regional cities outside metropolitan Melbourne, with well-established economies and the potential to expand further. If their infrastructure and transport services keep pace and education and employment opportunities are provided for residents, then these cities will continue to attract people from Melbourne and retain existing residents.
Without a strong transport network, as these regional cities continue to expand they will start experiencing congestion and frustration just like the growing pains experienced in Melbourne’s outer suburbs.
RACV's Regional Growing Pains plan sets out our recommended 76 transport projects across regional Victoria’s 10 largest cities including road, public transport and bicycle projects. Use the interactive map above to see the projects, download the Regional Growing Pains brochure or read the summary of what RACV wants on behalf of our members.