What noise? Property prices in Brisbane suburbs under flight paths continue their climb

What noise? Property prices in Brisbane suburbs under flight paths continue their climb
What noise? Property prices in Brisbane suburbs under flight paths continue their climb

Aircraft noise has had minimal, if any, impact on property prices in suburbs near or under the flight paths to Brisbane Airport, a QUT analysis of 26 years of property sales, rental and investment performance has found.

The study found property prices in some high-value suburbs with high noise complaints rose at a greater rate than other similar suburbs unaffected by aircraft noise.

Property economist Professor Chris Eves and Andrea Blake from QUT’s School of Civil Engineering and Built Environment and the QUT Air Transport Innovation Centre analysed price, saleability, investment performance and capital growth from 1988 to 2014 of residential properties in 40 Brisbane suburbs either near the airport or under a flight path.

“It is the most detailed and comprehensive analysis of the impact of aircraft noise ever undertaken in Australia,” Professor Eves said. The study was commissioned by Brisbane Airport Corporation.

“In total we looked at more than 180,000 sales transactions in 40 suburbs ranging from those whose residents recorded the highest number of noise complaints to those which reported minimal or no aircraft noise.

“Our findings suggest that factors such as proximity to transport, the Brisbane CBD, schools, recreation facilities, the airport and other services, far outweigh any negative impact experienced as a consequence of being under a flight path or from aircraft noise.”

Professor Eves said the suburbs were classified by the number of aircraft noise complaints recorded by Air Services Australia over the past five years. These suburbs were classified  as having high, moderate or minimal/no noise complaints.

“Our analysis shows very little difference in growth of house prices across high-value suburbs regardless of where they were situated or their exposure to aircraft noise.

“For example, Bulimba, which is under an existing flight path and records moderate noise complaints, has capital returns slightly higher than New Farm which is not subject to any noise complaints.

“The capital returns for Ascot and Balmoral, which are currently not under a flight path, are less than the capital returns for Bulimba.”

Professor Eves said units and townhouses under Brisbane flight paths also showed no impact on investment performance from aircraft noise.

“Rental properties under the existing main southern flight path, which attracts the highest level of noise complaints, have a rental market increasing at the same percentage as properties not located under an existing flight path,” he said.

“In fact, over the 26 years, units and townhouses in the high noise complaint suburbs showed an average annual capital return of 7.66 per cent, which is higher than the capital returns in the moderate noise complaint suburbs of 7.40 per cent, but slightly lower than capital return for no noise complaint suburbs.

“In higher value, middle socio-economic suburbs, two of the highest average annual capital returns for the 26-year period for houses were achieved by Camp Hill (9.52 per cent) and CANNON HILL (9.72 per cent).

“Each of these suburbs is under the main southern flight path and subject to high noise complaints. In contrast, Bardon with minimal/no noise complaints achieved 9.02 per cent.”

Professor Eves said Hendra, another higher value middle socio-economic suburb, adjoining the airport, had recorded moderate noise complaints but outdid them all and achieved an average annual capital return of 10.9 per cent.

“Hendra is not currently under a flight path but will be when the New Parallel Runway opens in 2020,” he said.

“Even when we looked at the only two lower- value, middle socioeconomic suburbs in the study, we found similar effects.

Mt Gravatt East, which records moderate noise complaints under the existing flight path, had, at 7.93 per cent, a higher average annual capital return than the Brisbane median of 7.72 per cent.

“In contrast Chermside West, which has minimal/no noise complaints under the existing flight path, had below the median growth of 6.46 per cent?

“Overall the study found that the value and price of housing and units in Brisbane located under flight paths are determined by a range of factors other than aircraft noise.”

Professor Eves said that when the new proposed flight paths open in 2020 there would be many suburbs which had less noise because aircraft movements would be shared.

Brisbane Airport Corporation (BAC) corporate relations head Rachel Crowley said the potential negative impact on property values was a cause of concern for people living near an airport or under a flight path.

“We’re pleased that this study may provide some comfort to people who may be anxious about whether or not their property value is constrained by their location under a flight path,” Ms Crowley said.

“We also hope this study may convince property developers, vendors and real estate agents that being open and transparent about the presence of a flight path should not negatively impact sale price.

“Airports are essential national infrastructure and the importance of their ability to operate unencumbered cannot be over-stated.  

“Queensland is in the fortunate position of having its major gateway airport  both well-located and well-protected by a significant buffer of industrial land which protects residents from the worst aircraft noise experienced in cities which have residential development far closer to the airport.”

Suburbs in the study were:

High noise complaints 



Camp Hill



Seven Hills




The Gap



Moderate Noise Complaints

Gordon Park



Mount Gravatt East




Chapel Hill





Minimal/no noise complaints



New Farm






Forest Lake




Suburbs under south flight path


Camp Hill

Seven Hills

Mt Gravatt East





North flight path




Chermside West



New flight path (2020)




New Farm

No flight path




Brisbane Property Prices

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