Corinna's Canberra: Kingston, 2604

Corinna’s Canberra: Kingston, 2604

Talk about Canberra history and the suburb of Kingston is almost always mentioned. This is because this suburb is one of the oldest—if not the oldest—suburbs in the nation’s capital.

The suburb is located around 3 kilometres from Canberra CBD and is surrounded by the following: Barton, Griffith, Fyshwick, and Manuka.

Today we put the spotlight on Kingston as we write about its history, the people who live there, and the features of the suburb.


What’s In A Name

Kingston is named after Charles Kingston, former premier of South Australia (1893-99). He was also the Minister for Trade and Customs in the very first Commonwealth Government.

Before Kingston was gazetted on 20th September 1928, it was originally known as Eastlake. The area was designated as living quarters for construction workers who occupied more than 100 portable wooden cottages.

Now Kingston is home to the Kingston Foreshore—the site of the multi-mullion dollar luxury apartment complexes located on the southern shore of Lake Burley in Griffin.

Street Names In The Suburb

Streets in Kingston are named after explorers, local pioneers and Australian flora. Some of the streets in Kingston and their origins are:

  • Telopea Park is named for the botanical species Telopea. Most of us would refer to this plant as “Waratah”
  • Howitt Street is named after Alfred William Howitt, an explorer who led the first search for Burke and Wills in 1862
  • Marri Street is named for a species of Eucalyptus. It is found in warm coastal districts of Western Australia.
  • Tench Street is named after Watkin Tench, an explorer who discovered the Nepean River in New South Wales in 1789
  • Spinifex Street got its name from an Australian grass, found on the sandy sea-coasts of Australia and in the dry inland areas of south and central Australia.
  • Dawes Street is named after the explorer and astronomer who established the first observatory at Dawes Point, Sydney in 1788 — William Dawes.

Who Lives There

According to the 2011 Census, there were 2,978 people in Kingston; 48.8% were male and 51.2% were female. Median age is 32 years. More than half of the people aged 15 and above have never married whilst 32 per cent were married.

The main industry of employment in Kingston is central government administration and dwellings are mostly apartment types or flats and units (83%).

During the Kingston community briefing held in 2009, participants shared the things they value most about Kingston were: 1) the atmosphere, 2) sense of community, and 3) the services

Features Of Kingston

Residents of Kingston are in area for the Red Hill and Forrest Primary Schools. There’s a high school (Telopea Park School) and the suburb is just 2 kilometres from Narrabundah College.

The Kingston Centre, one of the oldest shopping areas in Canberra, has undergone gentrification over the years and continues to be the main hub of retail therapy not only for Kingston residents but for residents of nearby suburbs as well.

Corinna Dental Group’s Brindabella Business Park practice is just 9 kilometres from Kingston via Pialligo Avenue.


Environment and Planning Directorate, Kingston Centre Master Plan