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Byron Shire
December 7, 2021

Residents object to Kollective’s latest plans in Bruns

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A large new proposal for a boarding house and retail shops by The Kollective is before the public, this time in Bayside Brunswick, right nextdoor to the preschool at 94 Kingsford Drive.

Called The Corso, it’s already stirred neighbours into action, with residents meeting last Sunday to discuss the proposal. 

An artist’s rendering of The Kollective development proposed for Brunswick Heads. www.thecorsobrunswick.net.au

While The Kollective promotes itself as a provider of long-term affordable rental housing for middle income earners, the company has attracted public criticism for pushing the limits of Council’s planning policies toward over-development in urban areas. 

Weak planning regs

Additionally, weak NSW regulations around affordable rental housing allow developers sunset clauses on such developments, while only having to provide 30 per cent of the floor area as ‘affordable’.

Resident Lisa Sandstrom told The Echo, ‘Local residents are appalled that The Kollective would think this would benefit the community in any way’. 

‘The community believed that a store and cafe similar to the South Golden beach and New Brighton beach shop and cafe was approved for the site. What The Kollective is proposing is something that belongs in a high density metropolitan area.

‘Concerns centre around the following: massively increased traffic, a boarding house overlooking the preschool, the amenity of the community, lack of services in the area, lack of employment, and the need for car ownership in Bayside.

‘The population of Bayside growing by a third from this one development on the size of five house lots!

‘The scale of this development is completely inappropriate for this neighbourhood.

‘We believe this company has previous form with its developments, pushing them as affordable housing in this Shire, when in fact, the developers seem to be building micro-apartments in attractive locations and renting [most of] them at market rates for young professionals and students’.

As part of new development application (DA) pre-lodgement policies, The Kollective have advertised their proposal.

Described as a ‘neighbourhood centre’, the plans include a 48 self-contained rooms boarding house, six shop top houses, co-working spaces and retail shops. 

The accomodation will be limited to between 48 and 96 persons, says the website’s FAQ, and ‘will not be for sale or for short term holiday rentals’. 

Instead, it will ‘provide permanent affordable housing for singles, couples and young families on moderate incomes living and working in the Byron Shire’. 

The website says rental costs for the boarding house will be between $285 and $385pw, and for shop top houses, $450 to $650pw. An ‘onsite manager to monitor operation of the boarding house’ will be employed, says The Kollective.

The application seeks to have a cafe and grocer operate from 7am to 7pm, daily. 

Developers also claim that approximately one third of the subject lot will be landscaped.

Ms Sandstrom added, ‘The Brunswick Bayside Collected Community (the name for our action group) strongly oppose this proposal and will be watching this DA application very closely’.

The website for the proposal is www.thecorsobrunswick.net.au.

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  1. What’s planned for our village shops complex? What about the amenity of the 1,000+ residents that will be living in Bayside. This proposal will be a disaster for the commercial land that residents always believed would include shops, including a corner store and cafe’. How will this happen if the site is filled with unit blocks? What we are looking at is over development of our village centre land that has allocated but 37 car spaces for two businesses, 50 single and 4 double units. The proposal does not include sufficient parking for the number of visitors one would expect and those trying to access two businesses. Regardless, the total numbers call for the very minimum potential of 55-63 vehicles for residents alone, the maximum is even higher. Then there’s visitors, employees and shoppers. Where will all these vehicles wind up? I’ll leave that to your imagination.


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