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September 26, 2023

Bayside Residents Association formed

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A new residents association has emerged in what residents say is one of Byron Shire’s ‘forgotten’ suburbs’ – Bayside Brunswick Heads. 

The Bayside Residents Association (BRA) say the suburb is on the verge of a massive population increase from five separate developments.

BRA President, Peter Tanner, told The Echo they aim to make the suburb ‘a true community, rather than a drive-in, drive-out housing development on the southern end of Brunswick Heads’.

Ballooning population

Tanner said, ‘Bayside’s current population of about 350 will balloon to more than 1,100 over the next few years’.

‘The BRA is committed to working positively with everyone concerned – residents, developers, Council – to make Bayside a great place to live,’ he said. ‘Bayside will be doing some heavy lifting to help ease the chronic housing shortage in the Shire. So it’s important we act now to create the soul of Bayside before development gets away from us.’

He says the major development is the staged Wallum project, which entails 123 dwelling blocks plus three medium density lots.

‘Fortunately, we have a good working relationship with Clarence Property, the developers of Wallum,’ Mr Tanner said. ‘They have listened closely to community concerns, and have significantly improved Wallum, including important environmental protections and revised block sizes.’

‘Another development awaiting a start is a 20-lot community title subdivision, by long-term local landowners, John and Gloria Mills.

Unresolved future 

‘There is also the Corso boarding house, whose unresolved future is blurred by the unannounced inclusion of flood-pods on their land, entailing major infrastructure work.

‘Then there are the 27 flood-pods partly built on the suburb’s small park, adjoining the preschool. The pods could be there for up to five years. Thereafter, the lease provides for the land to be “made good” and the vital Bayside Park returned to the community.

‘The BRA will be alert to ensure this happens, in the absence of a watertight guarantee the lease terms will be honoured.

‘We welcome the displaced people and are working to make their stay an enjoyable one,’ Mr Tanner said. ‘They are part of our community while they are here.’

‘Finally, it is believed that a 46-lot housing subdivision is also being planned.

No commercial outlets

‘Bayside is the only major suburb in the Shire which has no commercial outlets, and minimal public parks and green space. It has current and future issues with stormwater and sewage disposal. It also faces significant traffic challenges, with a choke point where the only access road meets the busy Brunswick Heads entrance near the highway.

Tanner added, ‘The BRA will start a membership drive in the near future, and plans to stage a community welcome for residents of the pod village’.

For further information, visit www.baysidera.com.au.

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