The suburb of Stirling was named after Admiral Sir James Stirling, who explored and colonised the Swan River and was the first Governor of Western Australia. Stirling was originally an extension of the Osborne Park market garden area, with the fertile swampy land used for rural purposes. The locality remained part of Osborne Park until 1976, when it was officially gazetted as Stirling.
Subdivision commenced in 1978 and continued throughout the 1980s and 1990s, with small pockets of land still being built upon today. Stirling is now almost completely developed and contains several regional facilities.
The Stirling Regional Centre includes the Stirling Civic Gardens subdivision, City of Stirling civic complex and crosses the Mitchell Freeway to include the Stirling train station and reaches as far as the Innaloo shopping and commercial precinct on Scarborough Beach Road. The future development of the Stirling Regional Centre will also add to the strategic importance of the area.