I downloaded the latest suburb shapefiles from the latest census at

http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/[email protected]/DetailsPage/1270.0.55.003July%202011

from the link

"State Suburbs ASGS Non ABS Structures Ed 2011 Digital Boundaries in ESRI Shapefile Format".

It has some missing polygons as when I open the shapefile in ArcGis for example it has holes around the Canberra region.

Im unsure how to best fill these holes are if there are tools out there to help me populate the holes with the correct polygons.


2 Answers 2


I'm surprised to see this too. I tried downloading the MapInfo version as well to compare but it was missing the same polygons. I did find this link which has the polygons for Canberra Suburbs. The suburb file is actually less comprehensive as the one the ABS website. However, there is a Districts layer too which fills in the gaps. However, you'll have to transform them as they are in AGD66 coordinate system.

It appears that the ACT has different rules or guidelines when it comes to defining suburbs.

You might also find some more information here.


The ABS stopped "supporting" suburbs as a geographical unit for data reporting in the new ASGS geography:


... depending on what your planning to use them for I would recommend either using Fezter's suggestion (which appear to provide Australia Post definitions of postal suburbs)

or moving to the ABS's SA2 definition for Census data.

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