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Byron Shire
December 3, 2022

Byron Shire – a community, not a commodity

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Byron Shire – a community, not a commodity.

If Airbnb is such a good idea, maybe STRA should come up with their own tagline instead of stealing the Byron Shire community phrase BYRON DESERVES BETTER, which was created to oppose the West Byron housing development. This development is currently being built on a floodplain, despite 20 recommendations that it should not go ahead.

It’s a balance. No-one is saying get rid of STRA or Airbnb – we just want some regulations.

Short-term rentals have a place. Tourism has a place, expense but it should not be at the cost of the residents who live in this area.

The anonymous people/companies behind this campaign are missing the point, and it seems pretty obvious that most of them are not permanent residents. The ads speak to city money, city priorities, investors with houses that are for rent, who are into profit, not community.

Even Brian Chesky, CEO of Airbnb, admitted it had affected communities, depleted housing supply, reduced long-term rentals and encouraged over-tourism in hotspots. Paris, Barcelona, Amsterdam, Santa Monica, New York, Berlin, London, San Francisco, and New York all have restrictions when it comes to Airbnb: stating that the cost to local communities and renters far exceeds the benefits it offers to travellers. It’s about time the NSW Government and the council get their heads out of the sand and do it for the Northern Rivers. 

B Crowle, Byron Bay

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