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Byron Shire
March 6, 2021

Keep Telstra out of Woolies’ hands

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David Brown, Mullumbimby Creek

Rumours swirl around Mullumbimby that Woolworths continue to covet the Telstra site on Station Street. Do they dream of an all-hours service station complete with convenience store and maybe a liquor outlet as a bonus? And will they take advantage of a cash-strapped Council that sees the site as quickly disposable low-hanging fruit?

The gods help us if the rumours come to fruition. More traffic in Station Street? Yes! Bright lights disrupting residents? Yes! Destruction of our local servos? Yes! Another vacant shop on Burringbar Street? Yes! An ugly monument to mammon at the town’s entrance. Yes! A totally unsuitable land use on the edge of what will be a Heritage Conservation Area? A thousand times yes!

No doubt at least three Councillors would hail such a move as progress and financially prudent. And no doubt there will be support in management. Hopefully our Mayor and the other five Councillors have the foresight and courage to seriously and transparently look at more suitable revenue generating alternatives. Alternatives that ensure Mullumbimby’s economy is not devastated. Alternatives that celebrate a sustainable future not a carbon dependent past.

Let’s have a bit of creative, commercially sound thinking about the Telstra site not a knee-jerk reaction to the challenge.

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  1. Speaking of “knee jerk reactions”, council rushed to buy the Telstra land thinking that they were beating Woolworths to it. If Woolworths wanted that land they would have bought it well before it went to auction. All that’s happened is that ratepayers money has again been squandered by council who had no plan for the use of this land. Mr. Brown from Mullumbimby Creek should ask the council what they intended to use it for when they bought it and what do they intend to do with it now – dragging out the old Woolworths “red herring” is not facing the irresponsibility of council’s action and their failure to make use of it now.


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