What Will Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs Look Like In 2035?

For many of us, 2005 may seem like yesterday.

And yet, so much has changed in the 15 years since. Back then, there was no iPhone or iPad, no light rail, no Twitter or Instagram. Facebook was less than a year old, we hadn’t experienced the Global Financial Crisis and there was no COVID-19.

The eastern suburbs property market looked a lot different too. There were fewer people (actually more than one million fewer across the whole of Sydney, according to ABS figures) and less congestion but also less public transport. There were a lot fewer apartments, a lot fewer eating and drinking options and property was a lot cheaper too. In fact, the median price of a detached Sydney home was only around $500,000, according to the ABS.

So what changes can we expect from the next 15 years? We’ve identified some current trends to reveal how we think Sydney’s eastern suburbs will develop between now and 2035.

You’ll be able to keep the car in the garage or even get rid of it altogether

The eastern suburbs is already one of Sydney’s - and Australia’s - best-connected areas. But over the next 15 years, infrastructure projects and global technological developments will take this to a whole new level.

Already we’ve seen the light rail change transport routes between Randwick and Kingsford and the city via Surry Hills, even if the effects of COVID-19 mean that it’s currently not running at full capacity. We’re also going to see new roads, new cycleways and new pedestrian areas - each of which is aimed at reducing congestion and making our area an even nicer place to live.

When you add on top of this the enormous growth that ride-sharing services are currently enjoying and the potential for autonomous vehicles to take off, we forecast that in 15 years time the eastern suburbs will be a place you no longer need to own a car.

More apartments but it’s quality that will count

As this happens, we expect more and more people will see the benefits of apartment living. However, these people will increasingly expect the privacy, comfort and even the size usually associated with the family home.

This is a trend we’re already seeing - not just from traditional downsizers but also from families who want to be close to the action. The idea of spending weekends mowing the lawn or fishing leaves out of the backyard swimming pool holds little appeal for today’s time-poor Sydneysiders. Instead, people want to use their limited downtime experiencing what life has to offer and, with parks, beaches, Sydney harbour and urban settings all in close proximity, few places offer a lifestyle like the East.

From commercial to residential

To accommodate the growing number of people who want this kind of living, we’re going to see many traditionally commercial buildings transformed into high-end residences. The PACIFIC Bondi Beach is a good example of what to expect, where a hotel that was past its prime became one of Sydney’s most desirable addresses.

After all, land in the eastern suburbs is limited and it’s these buildings that already come with the floorspace and internal infrastructure to work as apartment complexes. Many can become mixed-use premises without too much investment at all. So expect more buildings across the eastern suburbs to follow suit.

New hotspots

We often think of Sydney’s eastern suburbs as an established lifestyle area. But actually, over the past 15 years beachside suburbs - such as Clovelly, Coogee and Bronte - have become increasingly fashionable. Even Bondi Beach once had a greater reputation for backpackers and all-night parties than it did for today’s glamorous lifestyle.

In the time between now and 2035 new hotspots will emerge, driven by what people value and where they want to be. Our feeling is that, while the beaches will stay popular, people will also develop a newfound enthusiasm for the parkside suburbs such as Paddington and Woollahra.

So many of the terrace houses in these areas offer scope for real improvement and, what’s more, they’re within walking distance of pretty much everything anyone would ever need or want.

Another part of the East we see attracting greater demand is the Kensington/Randwick area. Buoyed by better transport, a growing restaurant, cafe and bar scene and booming jobs market of the hospitals and university.

That said, given the eastern suburbs is a desirable place to live and is only becoming even more desirable still, we expect all suburbs to grow over the next 15 years.

Want more?

If you’d like to know more about buying or selling in Sydney’s East, please get in touch.

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