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Byron Shire
March 27, 2023

OSCA Roundhouse plan ludicrous

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In response to the Roundhouse opposition regarding the sale of 11 blocks of council-owned land in Ocean Shores: The Roundhouse land sale was opposed by Ocean Shores Community Association (OSCA), which managed to stop the sale of these blocks three days before they were about to go to auction earlier this month. They demand that the land should be given over to the local community.

Having read the OSCA website proposal I have to say that they really should rethink their ideas and consider the cost to everyone in the shire of this legal delay.

The suggested proposal by OSCA is to create a cultural centre with accommodation for tourism: ‘There is a need for tourist accommodation in Ocean Shores with only one motel at present to service the needs of the town. Research indicates a very high occupancy rate for the short-stay units can be achieved. Promotion of the site and Ocean Shores would benefit all tourist accommodation businesses in the area.’

Tourism may be the shire’s economic driver but we residents have had enough of being driven out of house and home, losing our heritage buildings to modern tourist development. Losing our cute, arty shops and local restaurants to the commercial big companies.

I love Byron Bay but can no longer afford to live there. I moved to Ocean Shores to get away from traffic congestion and tourist operators who rule the town, seven years ago, having lived in Byron since 1986. We do not want that kind of impact here in a quiet residential area such as Ocean Shores.

To propose parking for 88 cars is ludicrous. How would the nearby residents like to deal with that amount of traffic all day and night? The exit from the Roundhouse site is quite small and would not support that impact.

Has anyone asked the neighbours if they want a large commercial ‘Artist Cultural Centre’ next door with 22–30 apartments, a restaurant, a kids’ playground and a gallery/museum, because that is what they are proposing. Certainly creative arts centres have a place in the shire but this plan is unrealistic and would go better in an open, rural setting, such as the Tweed Gallery has.

This delay to the council, should it go to court soon, will be at a huge cost to all residents in the shire, unlike OSCA who have been offered free legal help from a Sydney team! We don’t need a lengthy court case which the council can ill afford; we need funds for infrastructure in our shire, which the sale of the blocks can help to provide.

Radha Kate Koch, Ocean Shores

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