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Byron Shire
December 7, 2021

Renewed push for Nth Lismore subdivision

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Some of the members of the North LIsmore Plateau Protection Group, Patrick Speeding, Mickey Ryan, Neil Owen and Les Speeding. (Darren Coyne)
Some of the members of the North LIsmore Plateau Protection Group, Patrick Speeding, Mickey Ryan, Neil Owen and Les Speeding. (Darren Coyne)

Darren Coyne

Lismore City Council is preparing to have another go at rezoning land for a massive 1,541 dwelling subdivision to the west of the city.

The proposed North Lismore Plateau development, if it proceeds, would provide houses for more than 3,700 people, and would be the largest urban development undertaken since the creation of Goonellabah.

The proposal suffered a major setback recently however when Aboriginal man, Mickey Ryan successfully challenged the council’s previous attempt to rezone the land.

The NSW Land and Environment Court found that an amendment to the Lismore LEP 2012 was invalid because the plans placed on public exhibition were different to those gazetted, as a result of changes made by the NSW Department of Planning and Environment.

The Department had removed environmental zones within the

As a result, it’s back to square one.

Lismore councillors had a workshop this week to discuss the way forward, and will consider a report on the matter at next Tuesday’s council meeting.

A report by consultant planner Mike Svikis recommends that if the council proceeds with the rezoning environmental zones should be included in the plan.

At the workshop, councillors heard that the developers were now asking that the council ‘take an active role in facilitating delivery of internal assets’.

The developers also want the council to accept responsibility for negotiating access arrangements, and the acquisition of easements and road reserves.

Greens councillor Vanessa Ekins said the council was already planning to spend $20 million on water and sewer headworks, and now the developers want the council to be responsible for the internal water and sewer.

She said residents were already being slugged increased rates.

‘In the past five years we have moved from a position where water and wastewater assets for the North Lismore Plateau were to be provided by the developers at no cost to council, to a position where council accepted responsibility for financing and providing assets external to the development, and then to a further position where Council agreed to cap developer contributions,’ she said.

‘To date, these decisions by council to take on greater responsibility for the provision of services to this development have led to an increase in the combined typical residential bill for water and wastewater services of approximately $105.00 per annum.

‘This effects the charges paid by all customers of council’s water and wastewater services.’

The report to councillors for next Tuesday’s meeting recommends that they again forward the planning proposal to the NSW Department of Planning and Environment for a ‘gateway determination’ so that the public exhibition can occur concurrent with government agency consultation.

Meanwhile, Mr Ryan, who took the council to court, told Echonetdaily that he would continue to oppose the development.

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