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Nhulunbuy - Gunyangara

About the profile areas

The 2016 Estimated Resident Population for Nhulunbuy - Gunyangara is 3,847, with a population density of 0.56 persons per hectare.

Location and boundaries

Nhulunbuy - Gunyangara is bounded by the Arafura Sea in the north, the locality of East Arnhem in the east and south, and Melville Bay in the west.

Name origin

Nhulunbuy is named from Aboriginal words meaning “adjoining area or associated with Mount Saunders”. It was previously known as Gove.

Settlement history

Traditionally, indigenous people lived in the area, and continue to do so, mainly in small communities. European settlement dates from the late 1960s when a bauxite mine and deep water port were established on Gove Peninsula, followed by an alumina refinery. The special purpose township of Nhulunbuy was established in 1972 to service the needs of the nearby Nabalco (now Rio Tinto Alcan) bauxite mining operations. Rapid population growth took place during the 1970s and early 1980s. The Gunyangara Aboriginal community was established in the late 1970s. The population of this area was relatively stable during the 1990s, and then increased substantially between 2001 and 2006, as the alumina refinery expanded. The population declined between 2006 and 2011, as dwelling occupancy rates declined. Population loss is expected to continue, due to the closure of the alumina refinery in 2014.

Land use

Nhulunbuy - Gunyangara includes the township of Nhulunbuy, the indigenous community of Gunyangara, and surrounding industrial and rural areas. Gunyangara is a small island, linked to the mainland by the Causeway.

Major features

Major features of the area include Gove Country Golf Club, Gove Boat Club, Gove District Hospital, Captain Cook Shopping Centre, Endeavour Square Shopping Centre, Gove Aquatic Centre, Walkabout Lodge, Rio Tinto Alcan - Gove Mine, Port of Gove, Hindle Oval, Mt Saunders, Gayngaru Wetlands Walk, various beaches, Nhulunbuy Training Centre and three schools.