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Maroubra

Maroubra Beach, looking south, c. 1935-1045

Maroubra Beach, looking south, c. 1935-1045

The suburb of Maroubra is located on the south east of Randwick City and is bounded by South Coogee and Kingsford to the north, Botany Bay LGA to the west, and Malabar and Matraville to the south. Anzac Parade divides the suburb into eastern and western areas and there are distinct differences in the character of the two. The eastern area of Maroubra has an extensive coastline which includes Maroubra Beach and Mahon pool and coastal walk. Land to the east includes the Department of Housing subdivision (Coral Sea Estate) containing a mix of Turner Rigby-designed flats and townhouses in a distinct subdivision pattern. The western area includes large open space and recreation area including Heffron Park and the Des Renford Aquatic Centre, surrounded by predominantly single houses.

Housing in Maroubra ranges from single houses (scattered throughout the suburb but primarily in the west) to four-plus storey flats. Approximately a third of all private dwellings in Maroubra are separate houses, slightly higher than the Randwick City average (28 per cent). Maroubra also has a slightly higher proportion of semi-detached housing, 19 per cent compared with the Randwick City average (15 per cent). Overall, Maroubra has a lower proportion of residential flat buildings than the Randwick City average (39 per cent compared with 48 per cent average for Randwick City). A large proportion of the residential flat buildings in Maroubra are one- to three-storey and tend to be located around Maroubra Junction, on major roads and in the east of the suburb towards the beach.

The Maroubra Junction shopping centre is one of the main shopping areas in Randwick City and is located on Anzac Parade and Maroubra Road. Multistorey housing development has occurred above the ground-level commercial areas in Maroubra Junction. Bus services operate along Anzac Parade; these bus services are the only form of public transport available to the suburb.

Maroubra is the largest suburb in Randwick City, in both size and population, and also contains the largest town centre (Maroubra Junction), the Bowen Library and multi-purpose centre and the largest Council park (Heffron Park). The Maroubra population is similar to the Randwick City average, with higher proportions of 20 to 34 year olds and fewer children and older people. Maroubra has slightly more family households, married people and widowed people. There is a lower proportion of flats in Maroubra overall than the Randwick City average, with flats mainly occurring in the eastern coastal section of the suburb and in Maroubra Junction. More people speak a language, other than English, at home than the average with the most popular languages being Chinese (Cantonese and Mandarin), Greek and Indonesian.

History of Maroubra

Maroubra's development began post 1910. During the giddy 1920s the beach boardwalk was constructed and the suburb gained the Maroubra Beach Hotel on Marine Parade. Still rather inaccessible, Maroubra developed when a direct tram service was introduced in 1919 with a weekday peak hour service from Central Railway to Maroubra Beach Road. Although sparsely settled by 1920 Maroubra offered home builders electricity, 'the wonder fuel of the twenties, very modern and very smart', as well as water and gas. A big attraction in the 1920s was the Maroubra Speedway. Car racing in Maroubra ended in 1928 but it was used as a motorcycle track until 1934. The Coral Sea Park Estate was established on the site. In the 1930s liver coloured, brick, semi-detached houses were built for rental. The 1940s saw rows of home units and by the 1970s Crown land on the heights was released for home building.

Lawrence, J. Pictorial History of Randwick, Kingsclear Books, Alexandria, 2001, pp.54-60.