Location Map for Downer
Location Map for Downer

Downer is a suburb in Canberra Australia, in the Inner North. The suburb is bounded by Northbourne Avenue, Antill Street and Philip Avenue.

The suburb was gazetted in 1960 and named after Sir John Downer (1844 – 1915) Premier of South Australia and a member of the first Australian Senate in 1901. There is no specific theme for street names.

The buildings which make up the Downer community centre and former shops, were built for the CSIRO in 1930s, and the area now comprising Downer was an agricultural research facility for the CSIRO. The area now comprising the suburb was used between 1939-45 as a plantation for the growth of opium poppy to provide a source for medications in the unavailability of imported supplies. The large pine and gum trees which surround the block around the shops were planted in this time as a wind break for the CSIRO building. Large trees (Camden Woolybutts) along Swinden street were also planted then, as Swinden street was the driveway for the CSIRO building, where it connected to Northbourne Avenue. With the development of the suburb the trees became diseased during the 1980s and a program is underway to replace them with more amenable local varieties of gum. As of September 2008, all but two or three of the older Swinden Street gums have been removed.

Downer has a local oval between Frencham, Melba, Bonython and Bradfield streets, with a shopping centre. However in 2005 the shopping centre was vacant due partly to the poor location of the centre away from major roads. There is also the Canberra Business Centre nearby, which at one time was a school. The Downer Club, which has an observatory, is nearby, although not technically in Downer, on the Dickson side of Antill Street.

The population count of Downer on census night 2016 was 3,662 people.

Local Groups:

Most Recent 5 Downer Development Applications

planningalertsThe latest public Environment and Planning Directorate – Planning notifications can also be accessed from their site. The following is an extract of the public applications selected by NCCC that principally relate to Downer or have an impact on North Canberra or its residents; the extract may not be complete and does not contain development applications that are not publicly notified.

Address: 94 Blacket Street, Downer, ACT

Development Application: 201935178

Desecription: AMENDMENT TO APPROVED DA201935178. Amendment to the development application for PROPOSAL FOR MULTI UNIT DEVELOPMENT (S197C) - the amendment is to modify the proposed development from a 5 unit, two storey development with basement to a 3 unit, 2 storey development without basement.
Comment closure date: 2021-10-07

Address: Melba Street And Bradfield Street, Downer, ACT

Development Application: 202138825

Desecription: PROPOSAL FOR MULTI UNIT DEVELOPMENT - proposal is for lease variation and design and siting works, comprising construction of four buildings of total four storeys in height. One level of basement car parking, construction of driveway crossing, removal and replacement of trees and associated landscaping and site servicing works. Subdivision of the block into two blocks, variation of the Crown lease to reduce the maximum number of dwellings permitted to 130 and increase the maximum gross floor area permitted to 17,736sqm and associated works.
Comment closure date: 2021-09-24

Address: 149 Antill Street, Downer, ACT

Development Application: 202139171

Desecription: PROPOSAL FOR DWELLING ALTERATIONS AND SECONDARY RESIDENCE - internal alterations to existing residence to create a secondary residence and associated works
Comment closure date: 2021-09-29

Address: 19 Cole Street, Downer, ACT

Development Application: 202139012

Desecription: PROPOSAL FOR NEW DWELLING AND SECONDARY RESIDENCE - Demolition of existing dwelling and structures, construction of new single storey dwelling with double garage, secondary residence with single carport, new driveway verge crossing and associated works
Comment closure date: 2021-09-24

Address: 50 Blacket Street, Downer, ACT

Development Application: 202138963

Desecription: PROPOSAL FOR MULTI RESIDENCE DEVELOPMENT - demolition of the existing dwelling and the construction of 3 new two storey dwellings, two attached garages, one attached carport, extra parking spaces, new driveway, landscaping and associated works
Comment closure date: 2021-08-27

(Note: Earlier Development Applications can be seen by accessing the ACTPLA website or by going to PlanningAlerts. Note ACTPLA do remove access to the development application documentation some time after the DA closes, but PlanningAlerts do retain some basic historical information.)