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Byron Shire
May 17, 2021

Big Yelgun festival site plans on display – up to 50,000 flagged

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North Byron Parklands plans . (file pic)

The government has put plans up for a permanent home for the North Byron Parklands, home to Splendour in the Grass and the Falls Festival.

The Department of Planning and Environment (DoP) is now seeking public feedback on a proposal to make cultural events a permanent fixture at the site.

It follows a trial period of five years, plus a 20 month extension.

DoP say that upgrades to the site worth $42 million are proposed and include a conference centre, a permanent ‘golden view’ bar, terracing of the main amphitheatre, improvements to transport infrastructure, and restoration and maintenance of vegetation and habitat.

‘The site would operate 24 hours a day on event days, however amplified music from the stages would be restricted to 11am to midnight, or to 1am on new year’s eve.

The Echo asked the department how much revenue Byron Shire Council could expect from the festival site, if/when approved. Parklands’ general manager Mat Morris previously told The Echo they pay rates of around $20,000 to Council per year and are largely self contained with onsite sewer etc.

A DoP spokesperson replied by promoting the festival site’s ‘significant economic injection into the local economy.’

They told The Echo, ‘An economic assessment, prepared for the current development application, identified that in 2016 the two events generated about $126.4 million in economic output for the northern rivers region, with around $34.6 million for the Byron area.’

‘The capital investment value of $42 million refers to the cost to the applicant to undertake the project. 

Further infrastructure funding may be required through the council’s section 94 provision, a process which ensures developers make contributions to support infrastructure around their project. This will be considered in the Department’s assessment of the application.

‘The application is currently on exhibition and the Department welcomes feedback. It will carefully assess the proposal based on its merits and taking into consideration any submissions made.’

A separate modification request has also been lodged to modify the Concept Plan Approval to reflect the continued use of the Parklands as a cultural events site.

The SSD application and the modification request are on exhibition for an extended period and submissions can be made until 16 February 2018.

To make a submission or view the Environmental Impact Statement for the proposal click here


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7 COMMENTS

  1. If we get heavy rain that site is completely flood prone and Splendour do not even have an evacuation plan if that occurs

    Put it bluntly people will get severely injured if not deaths if a flash flood or heavy storms happen during a major event.

    They showed their true colours when a crowd surge caused injuries and luckily no fatalities at their event a few years back, in Lorne Victoria, by not cooperating with police in their investigation.

    Rapacious Greed same old same old

  2. So that’s it for the last wildlife corridor to the sea and the long history of attempted conservation. Money and the big end always wins in the short term but but thanks to them we all cook together in the slightly longer term.
    At least Simon the festival-booster will be pleased, wonder if they have anymore ‘environmental’ dunnies for him to bless.

  3. 30,000 to 50,000 people descend on the last major wildlife corridor connecting the World Heritage Wollumbin hinterland forests with the coastal lowland forests. This is one of NSW most biologically diverse localities. There are more than 50 threatened species in the locality of the trial festival site, but you wont see any as the noise scares the S^^T out of them. During festivals locals report windows rattling – how do animals deal with that level of disturbance? The wildlife will flee their homes and nests into other animals habitat creating a flow-on effect that greatly disturbs many species. We know that festival patrons are not happy to hear about their (unintentional) effects on the wildlife and we know that they would be happy to attend the festivals no matter where they were held – there’s no need to hold them in this special place.
    Want to know more? – CONOS Inc on Face Book

  4. headline is misleading – something being flagged usually means cancelled. this article show the push is on for 50,000 people 24 hours a day…at Yelgun…..take time to have your voice heard…..

  5. 50,000 people at Yelgun next to a Nature Reserve? So much for the North Coast being kind to the environment and threatened species. This is disgusting. Wake up people. This is not on and shows that people are complicit when it comes to Splendour and the other Yelgun music events. We voted against the invasive gas industry but it’s o.k. to subject 34 threatened species to massive events like this because people like music? That’s hypocrisy at it worst. I haven’t attended any events there because it is in the wrong spot. The rest of you who attend the festival should be ashamed of yourselves. It’s reported that all the Koalas there died of stress from events. Are you proud of that? You facilitated their deaths by supporting the event. Any so called Green supporter or so called conservationist that attends these events is a hypocrite.

  6. The influx of people at festival times so far in the surrounding towns has created issues with parking and access to shops and services, unsure how the elderly peoples are accessing services. I am not a supporter of an increase of such high population numbers. Where is the infrastructure to support these needs, or will there be raw sewage flushing in the rivers and creeks, like ten years ago.

    The wild life must be feeling traumatized when there is loud noises and high impact activity. I imagined our reserves and wild life corridors to be a place for trees and animals to have some peace to do what happens naturally. For me, where is the access for local people and schools to walk and learn and appreciate what a wild life sanctuary feels like without thousands of people impacting the natural system.

    I was happy to read in the echo of replanting and regeneration of the site but this also comes with supplying the elite with a view to watch and make bigger plans! Lets put in a swimming pool too! Juggling our environments and cultural sites for dollars is how I see it.

  7. New festivals like Paradise Lost failed in their waste management and gives me reason to think this festival would be just the same.

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