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March 31, 2023

What’s the future of Cedars Caravan Park?

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Old Cedars Caravan Park. Photo David Lowe.

Ballina councillors will soon be making a decision about what’s going to happen to the old Cedars Caravan Park on the corner of River Street and Barlows Road, with developers planning a mixed precinct.

The DA notice near the driveway only relates to demolishing what’s there now, to make way for an unspecified ‘future development’, but the complete plans for the site can be found via Ballina Council’s DA tracker, here.

Proposed development at Barlows Road/River Street.

Interstate developer CADRE says it is seeking consent ‘to build a mixed use development incorporating business premises, food and drink premises, industrial retail outlets, light industries, office premises and shop top housing’ on the site, which is very close to Fishery Creek.

The proposal includes significant earthworks to protect the buildings from flood (and likely worsen flood impacts on neighbours), and is not particularly high density, so it won’t do much to affect Ballina’s housing crisis, though it will include 44 ‘live-work’ units, following the recent trend set by the latest approved development near the shopping centre at Epiq.

Old Cedars Caravan Park. Photo David Lowe.

Won’t be cheap

The old caravan park was once a place where Ballina’s lower income earners could find accommodation, but has fallen into disrepair since it was closed, becoming something of an eyesore for locals and visitors to Ballina coming in from the south.

With Barlows Road set to be extended right through to the airport in coming years, this site near the roundabout will become increasingly central.

The area is also going to become busier, with 142 car spaces planned for this new development, which includes light industrial spaces and offices as well as residential areas, going up to three storeys.

Proposed development at Barlows Road/River Street.

There will also be a common food and drink area, and some open green spaces.

The construction budget for the new development (not including demolition and site preparation) has been estimated at $25 million.

The DA is expected to come before Ballina Shire Council later this month.

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  1. On the statement:”…fallen into disrepair since it was closed, becoming something of an eyesore for locals and visitors to Ballina”

    The site had been an eyesore long before it closed after the flooding. Whereas there are many other caravan park style semi-permanent housing offerings in and around Ballina that are not, and almost all of these are known for being much better managed and maintained than this site ever was.

    Council are being asked to consider this site development among many other developments sites.
    It would make sense that they ALL (where the site has any sensible residential potential) provide scope for housing for low-income residents.

    BTW the biggest eyesore in Ballina is the hulking wreck of the defunct Ballina Hotel on River Street.
    That neglected site is owned by publicans of another popular venue in the Bay (hint: it is ‘friendly’ and ‘railway-adjacent’)… what social licence should this owner be afforded by the NR community when they treat Ballina so poorly through that neglect ?
    When their chips are down (that’s a lot of chips to lose when you have had the kind of windfalls they have had recently) will they treat other communities in the NR the same ?


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