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Byron Shire
February 1, 2023

Architecture

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$3 million for regional news outlets in NSW

The NSW government has announced a new $3 million fund to assist regional communities to have access to trusted news sources covering the stories that matter.

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The current popular style of house building and renovation in Byron Bay I refer to as the ‘butter box bunker’ (BBB) style. This type of house is composed of a facade comprising a series of right-angled shapes often of contrasting textures. They are angular and ugly (I think) and clash aesthetically with the older houses around them.

They are also totally unsuited to the local climate. The best way to regulate the internal temperature of a house is: (a) raise it off the ground; and (b) have a substantial pad of air under a pitched roof above it.

This BBB type of house is usually built on a concrete slab with a skillion roof. The windows seem never to have awnings presumably as they would interfere with the geometric ‘look’ of the design. But an unshaded piece of glass becomes a hotplate radiating heat into the room behind it, and if it is raining and hot at the same time you have the choice of shutting out the rain but cutting off the airflow, or leaving it open and letting in the rain.

These houses often feature a ‘picture window’ which doesn’t overlook beach or bush but merely the street outside. Most of these windows are sealed, which suggests this type of house is dependent on airconditioning. Not a good choice during a climate crisis even if the owners don’t care ‘because we can afford it’.

David Gilet, Byron Bay


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Vale Professor Will Steffen – leading climate scientist

Leading climate scientist Professor Will Steffen has died of pancreatic cancer in Canberra at 75.

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