Browns Plains, a residential suburb in the north-west of Logan City, is 22 km south of central Brisbane. The origin of the name is unrecorded. Originally in the north of Beaudesert Shire, Browns Plains became part of the Logan local government area when Logan was created in 1979. Situated on the Mount Lindesay Highway, Browns Plains extended from Oxley Creek in the west to an alignment west of Scrubby Creek, in the modern suburb of Heritage Park.
Browns Plains was situated well south of the postwar Brisbane suburbs of Runcorn and Kuraby, south-east of Acacia Ridge and west of Woodridge. It was skirted by the South Coast and Beaudesert railway lines. Its sole significant transport access was the Beaudesert/Mt Lindesay Road, and urbanisation awaited the coming of mass car ownership. Until then Browns Plains had some farms and few amenities. In 1924 the roles of storekeeper and postmaster were performed part time by farmers.
During the period 1971 to 1981 the population of Browns Plains grew from under 400 to just over 2400, and by 1991 there were nearly 18,000 people in Browns Plains and all the suburbs south of Johnson Road later detached from it. Schools were opened in quick succession: St Bernadine’s Catholic primary school (1982), Browns Plains primary school (1983), Browns Plains high school (1985), and Yugimbir and Regents Park primary schools, both in Regents Park (1986, 1994). Tributary headwaters of Scrubby Creek run through or border Browns Plains, and they are the setting for an extensive pattern of linear parks.
In 1994 a sub-regional drive-in shopping centre, Browns Plains Grand Plaza, was opened at the corner of Mt Lindesay Highway and Browns Plains Road. It has two discount department stores, a variety store, two supermarkets, 128 other shops and an eight-screen cinema (the nearest equivalent centres are at Logan Central (1978) and Springwood (1974)). In addition to the Grand Plaza, there are two smaller drive-in shopping centres and a Bunnings hardware store adjacent to it.
The present suburb of Browns Plains extends from Mt Lindesay Highway to Scrubby Creek with Browns Plains Road as its west-to-east axis. The Logan Motorway passes about one kilometre to its north. Suburbs formerly in Browns Plains are (from west to east) Forestdale, Hillcrest, Regents Park and Heritage Park; and north of these, the eastern part of Calamvale, Drewvale, Stretton and Karawatha were also in Browns Plains.
Browns Plains census populations have been:
The census figures 1981-2001 are for an area that comprised Browns Plains, Forestdale, Hillcrest, Regents Park and Heritage Park. The census populations since 2006 are for the single suburb of Browns Plains.
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