15.5 C
Byron Shire
May 18, 2021

Council fights Bruns plan

Latest News

Butler Street Reserve checked for PFAS pollution

Authorities are checking the Byron Bay site for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, more commonly known as PFAS.

Other News

Plans to increase building heights in Byron CBD may be shelved

Byron Council’s controversial plan to increase building height limits on a block in the centre of Byron Bay looks set to be abandoned at this week’s planning meeting.

Editorial: The vulnerable at risk

Most of us would hope that the taxes we pay go towards key areas such as health, education and to supporting the most vulnerable in our community.

Lismore City Council declares housing emergency, wants more units

A Lismore City Council housing survey had shown more than 60 per cent of residents were living by themselves or with one other person, Cr Ekins said, prompting ‘a real need for smaller housing or units’.

Resilient communities training on offer

‘Resilience’ has become a buzzword in Australia over the past few years, as communities across the country struggle to cope with fire, floods, and a pandemic.

Byron Comedy Festival launched with a laugh

At a hilarious sold-out launch of the Byron Comedy Festival, Dr Karl Kruszelnicki had the entire Byron Bay Surf Club giggling last night

Remembering Bentley

Saturday 15 May is the seventh anniversary of Victory Day at the historic Bentley Blockade, just west of Lismore.

[author]Luis Feliu[/author]

Byron Shire Council will defend its refusal last year of the planned redevelopment of the Brunswick Heads gym and squash centre into a 34-unit boarding house, in what could be a test case for a controversial state policy on affordable rental housing.

The owners of the Teven Street property, Murray and Julia Stebbing, lodged an appeal in the Land and Environment Court late last year against the councillors’ 8–1 decision last June.

The refusal supported a campaign by residents who saw it as a major overdevelopment of the site which would have ruined the character of the village and amenity.

But staff had recommended approving the change of use and redevelopment of the 30-year-old gym, squash courts and indoor swimming pool centre into a boarding house under a policy introduced two years ago by the former Labor government to boost affordable rental housing.

Critics say developers were using the policy as a backdoor way to increase density. Mayor Jan Barham said the policy, which gives developers concessions such as fewer parking spaces and smaller room sizes to encourage affordable rental housing, was designed more for high-density metropolitan areas rather than regional centres.

In May last year, planning minister Brad Hazzard called for an immediate halt to new DAs under the policy.

Cr Ross Tucker, who supported the redevelopment, said the court case would be costly and that council planning staff ‘cannot defend this decision because their professional opinion was to grant consent’.

But other councillors disagreed, saying even though they supported affordable rental housing, the Teven Street proposal went too far and could set a precedent for an unacceptable level of density which could destroy the village’s character.


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Quarry comes up against the farmers of Bentley

You would need to be a pretty tough customer to come up against the Bentley farmers, yet, that is exactly what Rob and Sarah McKenzie, the operators of the Bentley Quarry, what they say is a local, family-operated business, are doing.

All fired up: former magistrate fumes at news of the world

How does one react to news of environmental vandalism, rampant domestic violence and mutilation of women without anger or distress?

Business calls for Tweed train tracks to be kept ignored

More than 800 people had signed a petition calling for a new rail trail to be built next to, rather than in place of, the existing disused railway line running through the shire.

Resilient communities training on offer

‘Resilience’ has become a buzzword in Australia over the past few years, as communities across the country struggle to cope with fire, floods, and a pandemic.