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Byron Shire
March 1, 2021

Kollective madness

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Dave Carnovale, Brunswick Heads

I write to inform you of significant community opposition to ‘The Corso’, a development proposal by The Kollective in Bayside Brunswick Heads. It is way over-the-top in scale and density for the area and should be strongly opposed.

The developer, known as The Kollective, implies that 48 boarding house units will be ‘affordable housing’, but their previous form is to build under this pretext and then let the market decide the rate. This results in micro dwellings being leased out at $413 to $625 per week. This does not appear to be ‘affordable housing’, rather an exploitation of the current guidelines, for commercial gain. Certainly a cafe was an expected development, but ‘six shops with shop-top dwellings’ will be unviable – there is no passing trade in the area and aren’t we in the midst of an economic downturn? As for the proposed ‘grocer’, the community already has one in the area with The Village Greens, at the top of Bayside Way.

The on-site parking is woefully inadequate at ‘0.5 car parks’ per dwelling as allowed under the current SEPP policy. If past developments by The Kollective are any guide, the roads around the development would become hopelessly choked with parked cars, not just from residents, but also from other parts of the complex, like the proposed cafe and retail spaces. I calculated there would be an additional 250 vehicular movements per day in the area. The site is within a designated bushfire prone area, surrounded by bushland.

I note that the NSW Government Planning Guidelines state: In February 2019 the ARHSEPP was amended so boarding houses are limited to 12 boarding rooms per site within the R2 Low Density Residential zone, to better reflect the scale and built form of the surrounding area. The changes will help manage impacts on neighbouring properties such as overlooking, overshadowing and car parking.’

The land is currently zoned B1 ‘Neighbourhood Centre’ but it sits within an R2 Low Density zone. The excerpt above shows that congestion is already a known issue for this type of development. It would permanently ruin the amenity of this small suburban enclave.

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