13.8 C
Byron Shire
May 22, 2024

Concerns mount for Epiq Superlot 5

Latest News

Trains on roads

Soon we will have electric self-driving cars. The number of cars around the world could drop to ten per...

Other News

Big tech, porn, violence and young blokes

I know it’s time we talked. The trouble is, I don’t know exactly what to say. But let’s try this...

Garry Simes racks up 25 finishes at Australia’s oldest ironman triathlon

Ballina Triathlon Club member Garry Simes has achieved the milestone of finishing the Port Macquarie Ironman Australia race, one...

Consumer watchdog asked to investigate MasterChef ‘renewable gas’ claims

Claims that ‘renewable gas’ is making MasterChef 'greener' are under scrutiny following a complaint to the ACCC.

New Murwillumbah pump station build underway

There is no denying that Murwillumbah floods and locals are hoping that the construction of a new stormwater pump...

Angels Beach Drive, East Ballina temporarily closed today

Angels Beach Drive, East Ballina has been temporarily closed due to a broken water main just north of Prospect Bridge.

2022 flood & DAs

At  Byron Council’s meeting on April 18, we didn’t get time to deal with Report 14.1 which contained formal...

Super Lot 5, corner of Snapper and Montwood Drive, Lennox Head. Photo David Lowe.

Submissions have closed on the controversial change of development plan for the large block at the corner of Snapper and Montwood Drive in Lennox Head, with Ballina Shire Council, Ballina MP Tamara Smith and local councillor Kiri Dicker all opposed.

The developer, Clarence Property, previously planned a retirement facility for the site, on the edge of the fast-expanding Epiq area. This has since been revised in favour of a plan to build a medium-density integrated housing development of over 100 dwellings.

The development is no longer in the hands of Ballina Council, with Clarence Property applying to the NSW Department of Planning and Environment to change the planned use of the land.

Locals are concerned about extra traffic and pressure on existing facilities, including schools. The site also adjoins endangered ecological communities and the habitat of threatened species.

Ballina Cr Kiri Dicker. Photo David Lowe.

Ballina councillor’s view

Lennox-based Cr Kiri Dicker attended a recent presentation by the developer to the Lennox Head Residents’ Association, and has also read the submissions from Ballina Shire Council and Tamara Smith MP.

Both are opposed to the change of use proposal in its current form.

‘Council is not the consent authority for this approval and is therefore only able to make a submission, which it has done,’ said Cr Dicker.

‘Council’s submission raises serious concern for the impact of the development on the adjacent Conservation Management Zone, which in recent years has seen a steep decline in threatened species habitat (the reasons for this are unknown and need to be further investigated urgently),’ she said.

Super lot 5 (outlined in red), withon the larger Epiq estate, Lennox Head.

Cr Dicker says other concerns include:

  1. The lack of a proper buffer zone (the developer proposes to build a public footpath between the development and the conservation management zone which is not supported by Council).
  2. Insufficient mosquito management.
  3. Insufficent technical studies to determine the impact on of the modification on biodiversity and stormwater management and discharge.

Density and diversity

Cr Kiri Dicker says, ‘In principle, I support medium density and “integrated” development (a variety of housing options in a lot) as an option for the Ballina Shire because it provides diversity of housing options (including allowing older people to downsize and young families to get a foot in the housing market) and makes sense from a climate perspective.’

She says smaller houses require less water and energy to run, as well as being easier to heat and cool, ‘BUT it needs to be developed with these issues in mind. If not, we end up with over-populated areas in places where infrastructure can’t keep pace.

Proposed residential development and internal roads at Super Lot 5, Lennox Head.

‘The proposed development includes lot sizes that are FAR BELOW the mimimum lot size in the Ballina LEP (as small as 123sqm in some cases!!)’

Cr Dicker says Ballina Council is concerned that several lots don’t have enough space for street frontage of garbage bins, won’t have an aspect suitable for future solar, and exceed height limits of the Local Environment Plan.

‘Council have also raised concern that the proposed central public reserve is too small and too steep to meet council standards,’ she said. ‘What was described by the developer at the presentation as a “pocket park” is effectively good for nothing.’

Affordable housing?

Cr Dicker said, ‘Do not be fooled into thinking that these tiny lots will be affordable. We’ve already seen bigger lots at Aureus enter the market for almost $1 million. We need to start pushing back on the idea that more housing = affordable housing. IT’S NOT TRUE!

‘Affordable housing is a product of government regulation,’ she said.

‘Ballina Shire Council has released enough land to meet projected demand for housing for the next 15-20 years at least. The current approved use for Super Lot 5 as a retirement facility is EXACTLY the kind of diversity we need as it will enable older couples living in big houses to downsize and free up space for younger families.’

Lennox Head Primary School groaning at the seams – temporary pod class rooms filling the oval. Photo David Lowe.

Cr Dicker said, ‘The proposed change of use to medium density development will result in hundreds more children living in the Epiq estate (a retirement facility would have 0) at a time when our schools are under pressure and we don’t even have a new site for Lennox Head Primary.

‘Not to mention adding to our already limited supply of parking.’

Although the deadline of submissions has now passed, Cr Dicker says she will be watching carefully to see how the state government responds to the concerns raised.

Previous articleA little lift
Next articleMullum, flooding and pods

Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


  1. Once again, developers are pulling a swiftie by changing their original plans from a Retirement Village to a housing estate. And all so they can make bigger bucks. And it’s out of Ballina Council’s hands who are opposed to it as are the locals.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Posters gone

I am writing to bring attention to a growing issue in our community – the removal of community posters. As a resident of this...

Bimbo Jimbo

For Treasurer Jim Chalmers to say that it was ‘simpler’ to just give everyone the energy rebate of $75 per quarter is stupid but...

Cartoon of the week – 22 May, 2024

The letters deadline for The Echo is noon Friday. Letters longer than 200 words may be cut. The publication of letters is at the discretion of the letters editor.

We Like to Tiki: Caper festival closing party this Sunday

North Byron Hotel is the official watering hole of Caper Byron Bay Food & Culture Festival 2024. To celebrate what is set to be...