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Byron Shire
October 19, 2021

Residents group want you to #protectByron

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The proposed West Byron development. Image Byron Residents’ Group.

The Byron Residents’ Group are encouraging people who want to make a submission against the West Byron development to do so today before the deadline.

‘It’s not too late,’ say the group who have a large list of concerns regarding the development.

Submissions close today but the group have published a guide to the three steps needed to submit and hope that submitters will open with a personalised introduction about who they are and how they fit into the community as well as their thoughts and concerns on how the development will impact the community.

The residents group say that the ‘local’ landowners of West Byron (known as Site R&D) have not accepted the refusal by the Northern Regional Planning Panel and are challenging the outcome in the Land and Environment Court.

An amended development

‘They have put forward an “amended” Development Application (DA) for the Courts to decide on – not us, not Council,’ they say. ‘The Court will consider submissions on this new DA so we need everyone step up and do their bit for our town.’

The group say that the DA is: not in the public interest and that the community rejection of the over-development of West Byron has been substantial with 5000+ objections from local residents, and thousands marching in the street; it is misleading in that there is not much difference to the originally submitted DA for 387 lots that was refused; there is no masterplan or coordination of the whole West Byron urban release area, and; there will be traffic chaos, generating over 14,000 additional vehicle trips per day on Ewingsdale Road.

Site is a wetland

The group also say that the development site is a drained wetland that is flood-affected and directly adjacent to the Belongil Creek. Belongil Estuary is a Special Purpose Zone of Cape Byron Marine Park. Urban stormwater discharge and changes to the entrances to estuaries are the top priority threats to NSW’s marine estate, and this proposed development will impact on both. Additionally, acid sulfate run-off and an increased volume of effluent from the Sewage Treatment Plant will enter the Belongil Creek, compounding its poor water quality.

They also say that there are climate change impacts, the importing some 500,000m3 of fill and a proposed four metre ‘acoustic wall’, framing the entry into Byron Bay.

They also have concerns about koalas – they says the developers claim that there are no koalas living on the site – also with what they see as damage to the local economy that will suffer from increased traffic congestion, polluted waterways, a giant wall and a generic mega suburb at our entrance will damage our reputation as a unique holiday destination.

Submissions can be made on the Byron Shire Council website – visit www.protectbyron.com for help with your submission.  To make a  submission email: [email protected] with the subject line – West Byron amended Development Application 10.2017.661.1. then you submission.


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7 COMMENTS

  1. I am sorry to read the article because I am sorry to see you will be defeated.
    You need a leader who knows how to campaign about council issues and the Land and Environment Court. You are generalising here and generalising carries no weight.
    The DA is development and development is in the Public Interest by the past Federal election and the Federal government elected in the “Jobs and Growth” campaign. Jobs and growth is to be developed in the Byron Shire by this development. The Public Interest means all the public, including tourists who might come here. The public Interest is the public of Australia.
    What you mean is the certain lifestyle that has been established as a “norm” in the Byron Shire. The Public Interest is macro-economics. You are looking at micro-economics, especially in the overloading of traffic in Ewingsdale Road. You have visual and physical proof with the Butler Street Bypass.
    You need Council on your side and especially the mayor and to be led by the mayor as at the last Council election the community elected Council. to handle development.

  2. To those who think development in Byron is wrong, perhaps you should think about all the benefits having additional ratepayers.
    Those who have the pleasure of living there and enjoying the surrounds right now, do not have the right to stop others from doing the same.
    What is lost on many is that additional housing means extra rates will be paid this can stave off huge rate rises in the future.
    Additional ratepayers also equates to additional services which of course will benefit all of the community.
    So much negativity about something that will in the end be a huge positive astounds.
    Yes, I have lived in an area in Victoria where residents were up in arms, I was happy with additional development. The development went ahead the result was upgrade of existing schools, better library, better roads etc., etc.

  3. It appears that the developers are very interested in pursuing this development. They will against local dissent win approval for some development on the site. We locals understand what all the extra people would mean for Byron , both , good and bad.I have three observations to make. Firstly the local businesses are going to need the extra local households to try to keep them afloat as the overseas tourists will likely not be available in the numbers as before Covid -19. I think anyone who believes Byron will get back to that pre- virus world is seriously deluded. Secondly, the amenities of Byron, are full .When this settles down the extra pressure on the town from more permanent residents will not make it a better place to visit for Aussies holidaying in Australia and they will be the future for the town. Lastly, the real estate environment that has existed in Byron for the last 40 yrs is likely to change now. Expect it to stagnate or fall. What was once very recently a sure thing, real estate prices constantly rising, is no longer guaranteed . The subdivision that would have been expected to sell out quickly as people rushed to lock in prices before they rise may not see that level of interest anymore.. This is particularly true if the towns businesses are struggling to stay afloat.It’s not the end of the world but it has most definitely changed and not everyone has cottoned on YET.! .

  4. Emily S; thank you for your sympathy. I appreciate your concern.
    I feel sorry for those who will see their over-inflated property prices plummet and the NSW Government agree to buy our the entire West Byron swamp from private ownership and hand it over to the NPWS who will generate sustainable JOBS to facilitate the GROWTH of the indigenous flaura & fauna that will return the Wetlands back to what they must has once been. There can even be a walking trail, and a guided tour. Then the millions of dollars of domestic and international tourism that usually visits this area can have a wonderfully expanding sense of what the “norm” of Byron Bay really is… but yeah; I know nothing about economics — so you’re probably right.
    We all know the area needs more housing, but putting it in the wetlands right next to belongil creek is not a good idea. It’s a brain fart.

  5. “Emily”, “Marianne” and “Anthony”, if they are indeed real people, are shills of the “local” developers. Does Anthony seriously believe that the West Byron development will be finished before the Covid 19 crisis is over? Marianne seems not to actually live here. What is wrong with our library and schools? Schools aren’t funded off rates anyway! If we wanted the Gold Coast, that’s where we’d live. We live here because that’s not what we want! And Emily, spare us the Matthias Corman “jobs und growth” bullshit. Next we’ll have Kraft durch Freude…

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