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Byron Shire
May 23, 2024

Byron’s CBD heights limits pushed – again 

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Having fought against high rise development in Byron Shire since the 1980s many locals are concerned at how developers are constantly pushing height limits for their own gain and where it will end. Photo Southport Queensland by CSIRO

The developer behind a new, multi-storey motel to be built in central Byron Bay has applied to further increase the height of the building, despite having already been allowed to exceed the maximum height limit for that part of town.

The owners of 33 Lawson Street already have permission to build a three-storey, 46-room hotel with two levels of basement parking.

That proposal involved an 11 per cent exceedance of height limits, drawing the ire of neighbours and those who oppose the creeping height increases taking place across the Byron CBD.

Now the same owners have applied to build a rooftop bar, pool, and bathroom, which would see the building’s height blow out to 12.5 metres – a 38 per cent exceedance of the 9m limit.

The modification application will come before this week’s Council planning meeting.

The application has brought five strongly-worded letters of objection from neighbours, including one couple who bought a unit next door with an eye to retiring there, and now fear a significant loss of amenity.

But the developer argues that despite significantly exceeding the height limit, the additions will make little difference to the overall visual impact of the building.

This argument has been accepted by Council staff.

They wrote, ‘A variation to the height provisions is supported in this instance as the staircase, lift and amenities on the rooftop generate minimal visual impacts, do not generate significant privacy or overlooking issues, or noticeably change the bulk and scale of the approved building…’


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7 COMMENTS

  1. Hey, although I live in Tassie, I’ve made it a point of visiting each year (pre-covid). I’m all for progress, this application seems to go beyond the character of your town. I hope you get the support to enable Byron to continue to be Byron. Good luck.

  2. Love the idea however, It’s the noise that will be the larger issue .. Remember lala land, constant sound issues from 10pm onwards.
    You cannot soundproof an open bar pumping great house tunes to 100 guests. Well unless it’s a howling northerly ..

    • Those of us living just to the South of the CBD might not agree about the northerly 🙂 but your point is well made. Lala Land did create a lot of issues for its neighbours (and the Police who had to constantly act on complaints) precisely because the sound was not enclosed.

  3. Maybe Council can explain why a rule is not a rule for some people. I’m sure any development I wanted to make would have to be within the rules, so please explain how I can circumvent your rules for my own gain.

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