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Dunedin City Council – Kaunihera-a-rohe o Otepoti
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What will the future bring

Changing Population

In contrast with other main centres, Dunedin’s population is remaining relatively static with projections suggesting growth of around 350 people per year, growing from 120,246 in 2013 to 130,700 in 2023.

Population projections also suggest change to the age composition of Dunedin’s population, with the most significant increase in the population aged 65+. People in this age group currently make up around 14.9% of Dunedin’s population, but will be 36% in 2031. The largest predicted
decrease is in the 40–64 age group, which will fall from 71% to 64%.

Research shows that sport and recreation participation varies with age, gender and cultural background. This means there will be different expectations for the quantity, quality and type of Dunedin’s events, programmes, facilities, parks and open spaces.

Increasing environmental awareness

While Dunedin has natural physical beauty with a large network of parks and open spaces, bush, harbour and open beaches, our native species have reduced since colonisation and continue to be under threat.

Dunedin's residents are becoming more aware of the need to better manage our impact on the natural environment and the potential threats of climate change. This means access to our special landscapes and our recreation and sport facilities needs to be balanced with the principles of protection, conservation and rehabilitation.

Technology and innovation

As New Zealand’s GigCity, Dunedin has one gigabit per second broadband services, placing the city on the map as the most connected in the Southern Hemisphere. We need to take advantage of this, and other future technological advances, to explore new ways to engage visitors, residents and businesses in the planning, use and enjoyment of Dunedin’s open space, sport and recreation opportunities.

New technologies and innovations also allow us to manage and develop our parks, sport and recreation assets more effectively and offer a greater diversity of new and appealing activities to our residents.

Growing our economy

With quality international sports facilities such as the Forsyth Barr Stadium, Moana Pool, the Ice Stadium, the Edgar Centre and Logan Park, Dunedin competes both nationally and globally for high-performance sports events. These events contribute to the local economy by drawing national and international visitors to our city. Our natural environment also contributes to making Dunedin an attractive choice for tourists, and new residents are drawn to the city by the lifestyle that Dunedin offers.

Changing role of third-party-administered open space and facilities

Open space and facilities administered by education providers and others contribute substantially to the network of sport and recreation facilities in Dunedin. Increasingly, education providers are seeking alternative investors in developing or redeveloping space. This means we may need to think differently about where, how and by whom facilities are developed in Dunedin, including potentially partnering with education providers.

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