When consulting a map, Denman Prospect in the Molonglo Valley isn’t quite Canberra’s most central suburb. But when you consider that it’s a 15-minute drive to Belconnen and Civic, less than ten minutes from Woden and a short five minutes to Cooleman Court, it may as well be.
The good news for prospective buyers and renters is that a convenient location isn’t all Denman Prospect has to offer. Homes on higher blocks enjoy sweeping views of the Molonglo Valley corridor and National Arboretum, while every house is built with solar passive design principles in mind.
Thinking about visiting or moving to Denman Prospect? Here’s what you need to know.
Denman Prospect is the first suburb to be developed by family business Canberra Airport Group, which offered the ACT Government $241 million to develop stage one of the new Molonglo Valley suburb around 2015.
Denman Prospect takes its name from Lady Denman, the wife of the fifth Governor-General of Australia.
Shops and eateries
Denman Village Shopping Centre opened in 2019 and now has a supermarket, medical practice, chemist, Dominos and Club Lime gym. Morning Dew is the local coffee shop, serving Ona Coffee and light breakfasts and lunches.
Cooleman Court in Weston is the next closest shopping centre, with retailers including Target Country, Aldi, Woolworths, Best and Less and a greengrocer. Popular eateries at Cooleman Court include Croatian restaurant Maestral Mediterranean Seafood Restaurant, Lava Espresso, community favourite Sakeena’s Cafe (try the pies and sausage rolls) and Chinatown Restaurant.
Places of interest and things to do
- Get active at Stromlo Forest Park. Sporting venue Stromlo Forest Park offers a cycling circuit and grass running track, plus equestrian and mountain bike trails. You don’t need to be an athlete to visit; people of all ages and abilities are welcome.
- Discover a new swimming spot. Denman Prospect is minutes from the water, with walking trails connecting the suburb to Cravens Creek and the Molonglo River corridor. Uriarra Crossing, on the Murrumbidgee River, is just a 10-minute drive away.
- National Arboretum. The National Arboretum has one of the world’s largest collections of rare or significant trees. It’s the perfect place to explore the forests, admire the sculptures, or discover the many trails by bike or on foot.
Playgrounds and parks
There’s one Denman Prospect playground that’s a must-visit for kids of all ages: Ridgeline Park Playground. Accessible via Goldbloom Street, Temple Terrace and Ada Norris Avenue, it doesn’t just boast fancy equipment like a flying fox and some creative climbing structures.
The hilltop park also has 360-degree views of Canberra (making it a great spot for watching events like Skyfire), as well as picnic areas and walking trails.
If you live in Denman Prospect and have access to a car, chances are you have a relatively easy commute to work. It’s a fast run into Belconnen via Coppins Crossing Road; proximity to Tuggeranong Parkway makes getting to Civic or Tuggeranong a breeze; and suburbs like Barton, Deakin and Kingston are accessible via the nearby Cotter Road.
While Denman Prospect is connected to Canberra’s cycle path network, a lack of off-road cycling connections does make it a little trickier to get to Civic and Belconnen by bike.
Construction is underway on Denman Prospect’s first school, Denman Prospect School, which is expected to open in 2021. Catering to around 600 students, it will take enrolments from preschool to Year 6.
There are plans to build a high school (Years 7 to 10) on the same site, opening in 2023.
The closest primary school is Charles Weston School in Coombs. It’s one of Canberra’s newest public primary schools and is a candidate school for the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Program.
Other nearby schools include:
- Orana Steiner School in Weston is an independent school for students in preschool to Year 12.
- St Jude’s Primary School and Early Learning Centre in Holder is a Catholic school for students from preschool to Year 6.
- Mount Stromlo High School is a public secondary school in Waramanga for students in Year 7 to Year 10.
Why the locals love it
“Living in Denman Prospect is all about convenience. As a builder working at different job sites over the year, I like that it’s easy to get to most other places in Canberra. It’s less than 15 minutes by car to the city, and it’s no big deal travelling from home to Woden, Tuggeranong or Belconnen. As a newer suburb, it’s also great that there are already local amenities like a gym, chemist, IGA and coffee shop. And of course, as someone who enjoys staying active, living within walking (or biking!) distance to Stromlo Forest Park is a big drawcard.” – Ben, 26.
- Median age: Census data not available. The median age over the road in Coombs is 31
- Median weekly household income: Census data not available
- Median weekly rent: $880
- Houses vs. apartments: Census data not available
- Suburb sales record (excludes land sales): $1,700,000 in 2019
Source: 2016 Census.
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Do you live, or have you previously lived, in Denman Prospect? What are your favourite things about the suburb? What advice would you give to people considering moving there? Share your thoughts in the comments below.