6.9 out of 10

St Marys

Ranked 206th best suburb in Adelaide (Greater)
-35.004193160234 138.580334460704
Great for
  • Public Transport
  • Medical Facilities
  • Safe & Sound
  • Schools
  • Internet Access
Not great for
  • Nightlife
  • Eating Out
Who lives here?
  • Retirees
  • Students
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Professionals


2/5 rating details
  • Neighbourly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 2/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 1/5
  • Peace & Quiet 1/5
  • Eating Out 1/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 1/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 2/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Cost of Living 1/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 4/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 3/5

"Having lived here for 19 years"

I have lived here for 19 years. It is a quiet area and up until 7 years ago I loved everything about living here. It has however slowly turned into a personal hell for us and we have been forced to move ala most of my neighbours.

There is one thing they don't tell people moving in that people looking to move here need to know. The ground this suburb is built on is unstable. Simply drive around and pay close attention to the number of cracks in houses. Not just the established homes but also the newly built ones. Everything built here cracks due to the specific soil St Mary's is built on that continually shifts. The council notoriously rubber stamp any building plans around here when enough money is involved (see the mitcham development register).

I am still young and all for progress but I have watched a lovely and sweet close community be pillaged and gentrified. Most of the houses here have been bought and knocked down to sub divide like anywhere else...but with the difference they only stay standing for about 6 months before they start to crack and subside. The builders of the houses are not stupid enough to live here either. They rent the houses out to some mixed bag type of people. The neighbourhood isn't what it used to be. The area is riddled with unstoppable termites and other pests too.

Noise levels are mixed. Expect heavy traffic all day from the trucks avoiding South and Goodwood Road and combine it with the very few speed bumps and street lights to guide them your whole house will shake. Also expect a lot of hoons driving the backroads on weekends. There are regular drag competitions. There are also a few tour buses that come around each day to visit a couple of houses that have private displays in their yards. There must a Japanese blog out there with tons of pictures of me feeding the pigeons in my dressing gown in my front yard as tourists meander around the neighbourhood.

You will also be living in a permanent building site. There are no less than 4-7 developments going on any block at a time with all the heavy machinery and trucks driving around. It has been like this for 7 years now. There is about a month in July when no building takes place each year when you can look forward to sleeping in past 7am even on weekends. Unfortunately it isn't always the case as there a lot are cowboy builders who start work outside of allowed times in terms of noise pollution.

It has to be said the location is ideal if you are renting as it is close to the CBD, Shops, schools, etc. It also has the NBN. You can find some nice neighbours but everyone keeps to themselves. Don't go by yourself or without a mobile to the parks in St Mary's due to some local incidents. I have been unable to walk my dog since the increase in people walking their aggressive dogs off the leash in the neighbourhood too. There is a significant amount of crime but only in specific areas of St Marys. The neighbourhood watch mag will give you a pattern and idea. Just don't be a chump and buy a house here. Rent but don't buy and definitely don't build to live here. Do your research. Drive around. Take a good look at the houses. You are better off on the flatter part nearer Daws Road end of the suburb if at all.
  • close to cbd
  • close to shops, schools, parks
  • NBN
  • Houses all built on unstable and shifting soil and constant building site
  • Noise levels from traffic and neighbours
  • Crime
Recommended for
  • Tourists
  • Students
thesuburbreviewer25 Honesty, I really don't want to hurt your feelings, but your review has made me very shocked. I have close relatives living in Pasadena (adjacent to St Mary's) and if there's other relatives visiting, such as cousins, we would likely go for a walk to the local park on Cashel Street to play basketball or soccer just for fun. This park is located within St Mary's and sometimes, we'd stay here until 8pm-8:30pm (the time it starts getting darker in summertime) and it's so peaceful! There are no such "hoons" of what you talk about. Going to the park on a Saturday evening and still leaving at the same time, there's still no hoons within the vicinity of the park or off in the distance. Crime? We'd even sometimes go for a walk around the Pasadena/St Mary's area and never had a problem at 8:00pm or even later (e.g. Never been mugged, caught in a fight, attempted robbery, etc. Unstable surface? Don't see any cracked houses, new or old. I've never seen aggressive dogs and we're talking about IN St Mary's

I don't know if I trust your review, whether you've deliberately tried to put down an area for overly-fun's sake or it's just a lie. And 7 years ago to now, St Mary's is still a safe, friendly and quiet neighbourhood. If I've hurt your feelings or anything like that, I say I'm sorry. Very sincerely. I don't intended to put other people down because I have no feelings, but rather, I do have feelings and would like to know more of what you are talking about. If you could, that would be great. Angry or not, just explain about what you mean. Because right now, I don't know if I trust this review. And these relatives of mine have been living here far longer than you have, 35 years, and still say St Mary's is a nice place although they live in Pasadena.
susant2 Thanks for being respectful in your response. I definitely didn't post to troll or anything like that. It was a very thought out post about my genuine experience living in in St Mary's for almost 20 years. I still stand by the key comment that you shouldn't buy to live there but rather rent. That the people who live there are mostly nice, the amenities close and very good, but there are some flaws with the noise levels, building work, cracking and hoons and commercial vehicles passing through.

Pasadena is completely different. Nothing wrong with that area that I am aware of on account of they are living on a tiered slope and so not on the flat Bay of Biscay soil. A well known problematic reactive soil that is under the whole of the south eastern side of St Mary's. When they assessed the area regarding why so many established homes were cracking it was determined that the problems with that type of soil combined with the rain run off coming down the slope from the direction of the hills and then the hot weather was what was causing the havoc, (expansion and contraction and all that).

St Mary's wise it affects homes mainly built prior to 1986 built on the older foundation style. However, we know from neighbours building new houses, combined with council meeting logs, and also driving around and taking a look around the area of St Mary's closer to the south eastern end that cracking and damage is still a problem. I wish I could post my vast vault of pics of examples on here. Using first person knowledge tho - Two twin houses and one two storey house built in the past few years just in my street alone have complained to the council, but we are aware of many, many more cases. The owner who built the twin houses came to ask us whether we and my 4 neighbours either side who also have cracks wanted to make a joint complaint in about July last year. They came out to assess our house and the neighbours and determined that the cracking situation was so severe the houses had to to be demolished or risk further action. Rather than risk having our house condemned as an unsafe dwelling both mine and the neighbours houses were demolished Dec 2016. (After I made the original post on here). That is how severe things are, and there are many more being demolished or being planned if you have a drive around. The twin houses owner btw sold the houses to avoid financial loss from the correction work needed, and the new owner worked all summer to fix and now rents out both houses rather than live there.

We ourselves were victims of serious crime on quite a few occasions. You can definitely use the neighbourhood watch magazine as a guide to the evidence of the types of things that are happening. It itemises the types and amounts per quarter. Mail theft and burglary being the most prominent for about the last 5 years. We have experienced both. In terms of the parks and to elaborate - At the Thurles Street Reserve myself and my small dog were pursued by two large aggressive dogs off the leash (this is Dec 2015 ). I had to grab him and climb up onto the kids playground climbing frame structure with the X's and O's while I waited for help to turn up. I only found out afterwards it had happened to other people too (even since then) and they have as yet been unable to locate the owners identity to press charges, etc. I have also been followed and approached on numerous occasions by strangers. I had to intervene when two small children who live around the park were being harassed about April last year. Just using recent examples. I guess the same can happen anywhere, but I think the danger with a lot of the St Mary's parks is people let down their guard as most of the local parks have houses on the outskirts all pointing inward and you get a false sense of security that someone is always keeping an eye on things. Things like this could potentially happen anywhere though - people just need to continue being vigilant and always carry their mobile. Nothing should stop people from going to and enjoying their local park.

In terms of the dangerous driving. I don't know anyone living on the cross sections of key streets like I have around St Mary's ala Lloyd, Walsh, Quinlan and Tobruk Street and the other major connection streets who haven't experienced hoons. It is something myself and all my neighbours are sick to the teeth of. Esp. re. the noise generation, (whenever there is no building noise going on). I have had to run out after a number of accidents to see if the person is alright and call emergency services. We managed to successfully campaign for speed bumps on one street connection off the western end of Lloyd and so that was a bit of progress, but we think there should be more. This in combination with the lack of street lighting is what causes issues with dangerous drivers and the number of vehicle incidents in St Marys.

I have spoken to one of the counsellors on a number of occasions and they are absolutely aware of the street speeding hoons and the large commercial vehicle issues as it is raised regularly at council meetings. There was a big commotion last year on the top end of Lloyd Street when the police managed to finally arrest a couple of them. The general theory my two neighbours (in their mid to late 20s) have is that there are a lot of students renting much further up near the uni who come through the suburb to avoid South Road ala all the trucks which are doing the same. Everyone knows how bad South Rd is and so they come via the back roads of suburbia to avoid traffic lights. Compared to the constant building noise it is not as much of a pain though.

St Mary's has been a home to my family and so to criticise it in any way has been hard. I think when you take into context a lot of suburbs you will find similar issues. It all depends if the exact issues mentioned are a deal breaker for that person. I am just seeing a lot of younger couples buying land to build new houses at the moment and it was a heartfelt response to seeing the disappointment happen time and time again. My original post was really only about people doing their own research and making informed choices based on their own independent findings and using multiple sources.
susant2 There were paragraphs when I posted btw but for some reason it chose not to include them, lol.
thesuburbreviewer25 I'm sorry how it took you a long time to post your review, but also, thanks for elaborating more for me to find the truth. It's really interesting how hot weather can affect the soil to crack old and even new homes, isn't it? Well, I guess I can't be too defensive about this as well because I love the southern suburbs over the northern suburbs, but rather the fact that I've never really taken the time to find out more about St Marys. Yes, Pasadena and St Marys are both completely different places, but I'd think that if both the areas take up half of each side, they'll both be as good as each other (safe, friendly, no hooligans, etc).

I still feel bad how you had to take the time out to write all this, but I really appreciated the fact that you did that. Thanks! :)
mrh2 My huge response decided not to show up for some reason. But in a nutshell, susan's post is not a lie. Ive been here for 15 years and its actually worse than that. Not only for me but at least 8 of my direct neighbours.
May 09, 2017
sarahf21 Hi Susan, l have lived in St Mary's for 15 years and feel it is a great suburb. My kids went and still go to schools close by. My son and I go to many of the parks close by most week ends, and have never had a problem. My son also rides to his primary school by himself aged 11. Our neighbours are friendly and have also lived in this suburb for years and we knocked our old house down and built our new one 7 years ago with no cracking problems yet. It's close to the city and beach. It would be nice with a few more cafe's but Pasadena foodland is close by.
Nov 01, 2017
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"Great suburb, quiet steets"

We love St Marys. We live in the more southern part and enjoy the native birds and quiet streets. With a bus stop a few houses away, we have access to the city and Marion Shopping Centre, as well as Flinders Medical Centre. Being an older neighbourhood with many original residents, we find the atmosphere friendly and great for the family. The only down side is the general movement of the ground causing cracks in our home, but we have learnt to live with that.
Recommended for
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Students
5/5 rating details
  • Neighbourly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 5/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 4/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 4/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 5/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 5/5
  • Schools 5/5
  • Childcare 5/5

"One of the best suburbs around!"

Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Students

Unranked Streets in St Marys

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-34.99388 138.58102