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Byron Shire
May 26, 2024

Keeping Byron’s magic alive needs better leadership

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Byron Bay is continually referred to as an ‘iconic’ place.

Perhaps the current custodians of Byron Bay should note the principles by which other iconic locations conduct business. These include:

  • Maintaining the ‘essence’ of the area. Don’t change those things that make the place iconic. Eg. Moving the long-time established Butler street Byron Bay Markets. This ‘Green Space’ is one of the few remaining inner urban parklands. Surely no ‘Green Mayor’ would contemplate any change other than enhancing the green nature of the area.
  •  Protect the intrinsic nature of the iconic location by preventing overdevelopment, despite pressure from big business, developers etc.
  • Apply a congestion tax to vehicles other than those of residents. This would require the council to build large carparks out of town and provide transport to people wanting to enter the town centre. This would solve the problem of buses, Winnebagos, caravans and large trucks trying to navigate the roundabouts and the massive traffic congestion that currently faces visitors trying to enjoy their stay in Byron.
  •  It would move the bus station to a location away from the town centre (not one street away) but completely out of town like so many other progressive ‘iconic’ places in the world.

It’s hard to fathom why our council would need a tax payer funded overseas jaunt to discover these facts: facts that everyone else in Byron Bay is aware of.

Catherine Henniker, Byron Bay


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4 COMMENTS

  1. The ‘green space’ you speak of is a contaminated field that has few trees on it. Its hot, dirty, dusty and is NOT a nice space for a market. Its certainly NOT a space we can call ‘green’. Im looking forward to visiting the markets on the beachfront where the environment is clean and im not walking on contaminated soil. The knowledge that the markets of Byron Bay is being held every month on such a site beggars belief!

    • Well said Sean. It’s a thoroughly unpleasant place to be, and I planted the trees there and have watered them for 18 months through the long dry spells. It’s almost completely unused outside of market hours. The idea that this is valuable ‘green space’s is absurd. No-one goes there.

  2. So is it therefore a good space for a bus interchange and a car park? It’s not a brilliant site but there is so little real community space in Byron’ centre that people understandably want to retain it for recreation. Alternatives like Cavanbah mean facing the horrors of Ewingdale Road! The beachfront is not a suitable permanent, or probably even temporary site, for the markets because of environmental damage and parking and congestion issues. I also feel for the Butler St residents who will have their residential area turned into a thoroughfare without compensation and when there are better alternatives. Let’s not confuse issues – the market isn’t being moved because the reserve is unattractive and contaminated.

    • Yes Gigi, it’s an ideal space for a visitor car park, being only 100m from the centre of the CBD, which will be easily accessible once new pedestrian paths across the railway line are built. The beachfront will not be a permanent market site, the area in and around Railway Park, the railway corridor and adjacent car parks (and perhaps even Jonson St) can be transformed into a great market site.

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