Varsity Lakes, Queensland
Gold Coast, Queensland
|Population||14,366 (2011)|
|LGA(s)||Gold Coast City|
|State electorate(s)||Burleigh, Mermaid Beach|
Varsity Lakes is a suburb of the Gold Coast, Queensland. This suburb was originally known as Stephens, however in 2002 Stephens, Andrews and a section of Robina was amalgamated to form the new suburb of Varsity Lakes. The 2001 Australian Census reported a population of 6,516 for the area.
In 1873 Thomas Blacket Stephens purchased 6980 acres of the Gold Coast hinterland and would name the area Merrimac Estate. In 1981 the Minister for Environment, Valuation and Administrative Services renamed the area Stephens after Thomas Blacket. In 1999 the area between Stephens and Robina was purchased by Delfin Lend Lease and development on the area named Varsity Lakes began. Man made lakes named Lake Orr and Lake Azzura were created and residential development followed. The success of the newly created area resulted in the suburbs Stephens, Andrews and some parts of Robina joining together in 2002 to become a new suburb named Varsity Lakes.
Origin of Name
The Varsity Lakes name came from a development by Delfin Lend Lease. Residents of the Varsity Lakes development have objected to being amalgamated into the same suburb as those from Stephens due to its history as a low socio-economic area. Fears were held by land owners that property values would drop. Some residents of the Varsity Lakes development threatened legal action against the developers to gain compensation.
In the 12 months to September 2008, the median house price in Varsity Lakes was $477,500.
Varsity Lakes offers the full range of schooling from Kindergarten right through to Grade 12. Post high school education is also available. These services are available from the following Education Facilities:
- ABC Learning Centre - Varsity Lakes
- Australian College Information Technology
- Goodstart Early Learning
- Varsity College
In the 2011 Census the population of Varsity Lakes is 14,366, 52.2% female and 47.8% male.
The median/average age of the Varsity Lakes population is 32 years of age, 5 years below the Australian average.
61.1% of people living in Varsity Lakes were born in Australia. The other top responses for country of birth were New Zealand 8.1%, England 4.8%, China 1.8%, South Africa 1.7%, Malaysia 1%.
76.8% of people speak English as their first language 2.3% Mandarin, 1.7% Cantonese, 1.1% Japanese, 1% Korean, 0.9% Arabic.
According to the 2011 census the religious groups in Varsity Lakes by size are; Roman Catholic - 23.4%, Anglican - 16%, Uniting Church - 4.3%, Non-denominational Christian - 3.9%, Presbyterian - 3.1% and Buddhism - 2.3%. Remaining religions make up for less than two percent individually while non-religious Atheism comprised 24.8%. Varsity Lakes offers several churches for Christianity. These churches include:
- Elevation Church (Reedy Creek)
- Generation Church (Burleigh Heads and Coomera)
- Hope Church Australia, B4/175 Varsity Pde., Varsity Lakes every Sunday at 10am. Hope College is a Registered Training College with VET FEE, CRICOS for international students and Centrelink approved, offering courses in theology, counselling, aged care and chaplaincy. Bethany Care is a disability service of Hope Church with overnight respite, day groups and events, three respite homes in Varsity Lakes caring for over 100 families.
Market Square offers a range of retail to the Varsity Lakes community. Major chains such as Subway, Night Owl and IGA are all located in Market Square. Market Square also offers banks, beauty salons, bottle shops, chemists, dental care, gyms, real estates, restaurants and taverns.
Christine Corner is another retail area located in Varsity Lakes which includes a second Subway, a second Night Owl, bakeries, beauty salons, betting agencies, bottle shops, medical centres, newsagents, petrol stations, restaurants, taverns and vets.
Majority of sporting facilities in Varsity Lakes are present in both the primary and secondary school campuses. Frascott Park also offers grass ovals and a basketball ring. Public facilities include:
- Basketball Courts
- Grass Ovals
- Tennis Courts
The Varsity Lakes Sports House is a precinct for water sports opened in 2012 and was created by Delphin Lend Lease, Gold Coast City Council and Varsity Lakes Community Limited. The centre is based on Lake Orr and has a heavy emphasis on Rowing but also caters for Canoeing, Kayaking, Sailing and Dragon Boating.
In 2008 the Varsity Lakes Skate Park (officially known as Janette Green Park) underwent a $1 million revamp. On March 17 2009 skating legend Tony Hawk visited the skate park and commented "We just go wherever the skate parks are and you've got a great skate park here." 
Regular bus services are provided by local company Surfside Buslines. These run seven days a week and provide connections to the main coastal services and to Robina Railway Station. These bus services are operated as part of TransLink, an integrated public transport network.
It was announced in the 2006/07 Queensland State Budget that the Gold Coast rail line was to be extended through to Varsity Lakes at a cost of $39.6 million. The Varsity Lakes railway station was opened in December, 2009. The eventual cost was $300 million.
- Campbell, Jack (18 March 2009). "Tony Hawk wows his fans". Gold Coast Bulletin. Retrieved 19 November 2012.
- Greg Stolz (14 December 2009). "Robina-Varsity Lakes rail extension state's most expensive". Courier Mail. Retrieved 31 January 2010.