Subiaco, Western Australia

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Perth,  Western Australia
City of Subiaco council chambers.JPG
City of Subiaco council chambers
Metropolitan Perth.svg
Red pog.svg
Coordinates 31°56′56″S115°49′37″E / 31.949°S 115.827°E / -31.949; 115.827 Coordinates: 31°56′56″S115°49′37″E / 31.949°S 115.827°E / -31.949; 115.827
Population9,202 (2016 census) [1]
 • Density2,880/km2 (7,450/sq mi)
Postcode(s) 6008
Area3.2 km2 (1.2 sq mi)
Location4 km (2 mi) W of Perth CBD
LGA(s) City of Subiaco
State electorate(s) Nedlands
Federal Division(s) Curtin
Suburbs around Subiaco:
Wembley West Leederville West Perth
Daglish Subiaco West Perth
Shenton Park Shenton Park Kings Park

Subiaco (known colloquially as Subi) is an inner western suburb of Perth, Western Australia, north-west of Kings Park within the boundaries of the City of Subiaco. Historically a working class suburb containing a mixture of industrial and commercial land uses, since the 1990s the area has been one of Australia’s most celebrated urban redevelopment projects. It remains a predominantly low-rise, urban village neighbourhood centred around Subiaco train station and Rokeby Road.



Prior to European settlement the area was home to the Noongar people. [2]

The area was settled in 1851 by Italian Benedictine monks. The monks named the area after Subiaco in Italy, the location where Benedict of Nursia, the founder of the Order of Saint Benedict, had begun his work. [2] [3]

The area developed rapidly in the late nineteenth century following the construction of the Perth to Fremantle Railway line. Industrial uses established themselves around the station with housing developing to the south with the area becoming a vibrant commercial hub by the 1930s (this area is now referred to as "Old Subiaco"). However, this industrial employment base went into decline from the 1960s with many of the suburb's historical buildings becoming derelict.

In 1997 the railway line through Subiaco was lowered, with a new station completed in 1998. This opened up 80 hectares of vacant land for the Subiaco Central redevelopment project administered by the Subiaco Redevelopment Authority.


Landmarks of suburb include Subiaco Oval, Mueller Park, the Regal Theatre, the Subiaco Hotel, the Victorian terraces on Catherine Street and the Subiaco Arts Centre.

Rokeby Road, a major road that runs through the suburb, features many shops and cafes. Rokeby Road, Subiaco.jpg
Rokeby Road, a major road that runs through the suburb, features many shops and cafes.

The main street of Subiaco is Rokeby Road, which was named after General Henry Montagu, 6th Baron Rokeby, who was commander of the 1st Infantry Division during the Crimean War. Another important commercial road is Hay Street.

Residential areas include Subi Centro, a modern housing development with the sunken Subiaco railway station on reclaimed industrial land near Wembley, and older heritage properties towards Shenton Park.

Major hospital facilities include St John of God Subiaco Hospital, Princess Margaret Hospital for Children and King Edward Memorial Hospital for Women.

School facilities include Subiaco Primary School [4] and Perth Modern School, the only academically selective school in Western Australia.

On the corner of Rokeby and Hamersley Roads is a clock tower war memorial, built in 1923 to commemorate soldiers from the district who died in World War I. The names of those who died in later conflicts have also been added. [5]


Subiaco has a large number of well-preserved high-quality historic homes, many with elaborate leadlight windows.

The City of Subiaco publishes a self-guide walking tour of some of them. From 1989 until 2006 a Festival of Leadlights community event was run biennially by a Subiaco resident. [6] It was restarted in 2018. [7]


Each year, the City of Subiaco supports a boutique street festival where Rokeby Road is closed off from traffic between Barker Road and Hay Street. It is commonly referred to as the "Subiaco Street Party" [8] and is a free community event that promotes live music, street food, markets and family entertainment.

Subiaco—along with Northbridge, Leederville and Fremantle—is one of Perth's major nightlife hubs. [9] It attracts people from all over the metropolitan region for its pubs, bars and nightclubs. Subiaco's bars and restaurants are largely clustered around Rokeby Road and Hay Street although in recent years several trendy cafes, restaurants and bars have opened up near the southern end of Rokeby Road. Subiaco encompasses small businesses, commercial retail chains, and franchise businesses. Notable business that have operated in Subiaco for over 30 years include the Subiaco Hotel, Farmer Jack Food Market, Coles Supermarkets, the Vic Hotel, Jana Beauty, [10] the Regal Theatre. [11] In addition to this, the Crossways shopping precinct on Rokeby Road was constructed in 1954. [12] [13] [14]

Subiaco is also known for its Subi Farmer's Market, held every Saturday morning near the primary school on Bagot Road. It is utilised by locals and other shoppers, with fresh and organic produce and a lively market atmosphere. [15]

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  1. Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Subiaco (State Suburb)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 19 April 2018. OOjs UI icon edit-ltr-progressive.svg
  2. 1 2 "Subiaco History". City of Subiaco. Retrieved 2 September 2009.
  3. "History of metropolitan suburb names - S". Landgate. Archived from the original on 14 July 2009. Retrieved 2 September 2009.
  4. "Home - Subiaco Primary School".
  5. Stephens, John; Seal, Graham (2015). Remembering the Wars: Commemoration in Western Australian Communities. Black Swan Press. pp. 38–39. ISBN   9780987567079.
  6. "Walking Subiaco : Leadlight" (PDF). City of Subiaco. 2012. Retrieved 15 March 2020.
  7. Rifici, Victoria (7 December 2018). "Subiaco resident brings back Leadlight Night". Western Suburbs Weekly. Community News Group. Retrieved 15 March 2020.
  8. "City of Subiaco - Subiaco Street Party 2019".
  9. Ashworth, Susie; Bain, Carolyn; Smitz, Paul. Lonely Planet Australia. Lonely Planet, 2004. ISBN   1-74059-447-9, p. 847
  11. "Regal Theatre".
  12. Stephenson, Gordon (1955). Plan for the Metropolitan Region, Perth and Fremantle, 1955 Report. Perth: Government Printing Office.
  13. "City of Subiaco - A-Z Directory". City of Subiaco Website. 11 March 2020.
  14. "2016 Census: Subiaco Community Profile". Australian Bureau of Statistics. 13 March 2020.
  15. "Subiaco Farmers Market Perth - Organic & Farm Produce - Fruit, Vegetables, Coffee, Eggs, Milk, Flowers, Meat, Seafood".

Further reading