BACCHUS Marsh has emerged as the state’s most popular tree change destination, with its population growing at a faster rate than any inland town or city in regional Victoria.
According to the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics figures the town’s estimated resident population grew by 4.2 per cent in the twelve months to June period last year.
That brought an extra 760 people in Bacchus Marsh or 14.6 new people each week in the town.
Moorabool Mayor, Cr Pat Griffin said he wasn’t surprised by the latest figures.
“The council has experienced very strong demand for new planning applications over the last few years,” Cr Griffin said.
“Moorabool Shire’s lifestyle options and location were always desirable.
“It was one of Victoria’s best kept secrets but not anymore.”
Cr Griffin said people were moving to Bacchus Marsh for lifestyle or business reasons.
“I meet new residents regularly and many say it was a great decision to move to the shire,” he said.
“They say they’ve traded a crushing mortgage in Melbourne for a better home, lower mortgage and a more rewarding lifestyle in Moorabool.
The shire’s second largest town, Ballan, also grew by 1.1 per cent, adding an extra 74 people to Ballan’s population over the same period, bringing it to a total of 6708 residents.
These increases pushed Moorabool Shire’s total population up 3 per cent for the period, making Moorabool shire the sixth fastest growing local government area in Victoria.
Only Bass Coast shire recorded a faster rate of growth at an increase of 3.7 per cent.
Moorabool shire’s total population at June 30 2011 was 29,409. Whereas Bacchus Marsh’s was recorded to be 18,953 during the same period.
Mayor Griffin said he expected the popularity of Bacchus Marsh and other parts of the shire to continue.
“With large residential estates like West Maddingley coming on line, mains sewerage planned for Gordon, health services expanding in Ballan, and super fast broadband set to transform communications in the west and east of the shire by year’s end - we expect interest to grow even stronger,” he said.