REVEALED: Rocky poised for huge growth
BY 2050, Rockhampton could be one of the biggest cities in Australia.
For the first time in years, Rockhampton has been identified as one of the top five Queensland regional hotspots for growth in 2016-17.
This was revealed in a report compiled by residential property specialist Terry Ryder of Hotspotting.com.au.
In the report, which identifies regional hotspots by considering events or influences which create capital growth for property, Rockhampton is ranked third in Queensland behind the Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast and ahead of Cairns and Hervey Bay.
Mr Ryder said Rockhampton had been re-introduced into the Hotspotting mix because of its future prospects.
"The Central Queensland city is still producing some negative statistics but with our Hotspots reports we are focused on the future - and now is a good time to re-consider the prospects for Rockhampton,” Mr Ryder said.
"Rockhampton is mounting a comeback after a couple of years in the doldrums. It has appeal as an important regional city with a diverse economy, affordable real estate and high rental returns.
"Evidence of this is coming through construction work which has intensified in the last two years, creating a focus on infrastructure by both public and private enterprise.
Mr Ryder's findings are supported by leading Australian demographer Bernard Salt who has predicted Rockhampton to become one of the top 20 biggest cities in the country and says the city is re-inventing itself as a 'pivot' city between the Bowen Basin coal reserves and overseas markets.
From a real estate perspective, Mr Ryder said many indicators, such as vacancies, remain negative, but increased spending on infrastructure and property development, as well as growing signs of revival in the resources sector, suggest long-term positive outcomes for the property market.
He said one of the most remarkable emerging changes at the moment is the speed of the turnaround in perception, confidence and activity in the resources sector.
"After 2-3 years of 'the resources boom is over' articles, suddenly the news is dominated by rising commodity prices and announcements of new mining ventures or the revival of projects previously mothballed,” Mr Ryder said.
This is particularly true in Queensland, where the spectacular rise in the price for coal has changed the mentality of the industry and perceptions about the state economy.
"For anyone who owns real estate in places like Mackay, Emerald, Moranbah or Rockhampton, this is seriously good news. There is now genuine hope of vacancy rates coming down and rents and prices rising again.
"For those long-suffering investors who have been agonising over whether to cut their loses and get out of badly-performing properties in places like Gladstone in Queensland, there is now some hope that hanging on will deliver, in time, a reasonable outcome.”