Economic Snapshot shows booming Wagga Wagga is the perfect mix of city and regional living
Published: 31 Aug 2018 3:49pm
Wagga Wagga is thriving on all fronts, with the latest Economic Snapshot showing the regional city is the perfect place to invest, work and live.
Data collated by Wagga Wagga City Council shows the foundations of growth are strong – including low cost base for development, growing private and public investment, a skilled workforce, positive business environment, and high levels of innovation and collaboration.
“Our point of difference compared to other regions is that Wagga Wagga is the best of both worlds,” Council’s Manager City Strategy Tristan Kell said.
“We are a thriving city in a growing regional area and Wagga Wagga’s economy has grown strongly in recent years.
“We are seeing a significant amount of public and private investment, which will only further enhance economic and population growth; and support other sectors such as retail, services and construction.
“These positive trends are expected to continue into the future, especially with funding for the proposed Riverina Intermodal Freight and Logistics Hub and our Public-Private Partnership with Visy Logistics, as well as projects such as the levee bank upgrade, commuter cycling network and more.”
Wagga Wagga’s Gross Regional Product was $3.7 billion for the 2016/17 financial year, up from $3.6B in 2015/16, with the largest growth in the agriculture, forestry and fishing (24.4 per cent), healthcare and social assistance (11.7 per cent) and manufacturing (9.3 per cent) sectors.
The city has a labour force in excess of 32,000 people, with health services, retail, public administration, education and construction the top five employers.
The Economic Snapshot also highlights that Wagga Wagga’s population is forecast to grow by at least 21.53 per cent by 2036, coupled with an increase in registered businesses, affordable housing and prime industrial land at one-tenth of the cost of equivalent blocks in Western Sydney.
While Wagga Wagga’s prime location between Sydney and Melbourne and proximity to Canberra is reaping economic benefits, it’s also making it more attractive to visitors.
“Wagga Wagga is the sweet spot offering the benefits of city and regional living,” Visitor Economy and Events Coordinator Fiona Hamilton said.
“More than 1.3M people visit Wagga Wagga each year with the city hosting over 650 sporting, cultural, business and music events each year – like Fusion, the Wagga Wagga Gold Cup, Gears and Beers and more.
“Overnight visitors to Wagga Wagga stay an average of three nights, using our city as a launch pad to explore our vibrant region while also experience everything we have to offer.”
Visitor numbers are likely to continue to increase with a number of major projects in the works such as the Wagga Wagga Multisport Cycling Complex at Pomingalarna Park, Stage 2 of the Riverside development and more.