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Byron Shire
September 21, 2023

Height limit pushed again in Byron CBD

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Is it okay to breach a town’s building height limit by 30 per cent so your holiday unit development can have a roof top swimming pool?

That seems to be the assumption made by a Byron Bay developer, whose application is coming before this week’s Council planning meeting.

The owners of 43 Lawson Street have submitted a modification application in a bid to effectively add an extra storey to their six-unit development on the strip.

Artist’s impression image obtained from Development Application for 43 Lawson Street, Byron Bay contained within the agenda to this week’s planning meeting.

If approved, the proposal would see the height of the build increase to 11.7m, which is 2.7m above the legislated height limit for that part of town.

This would accommodate the roof top pool and a large shed.

Council Planner, Patricia Docherty, has recommended that Council refuse the application, which she said raised ‘significant detrimental environmental impacts’ and was ‘not in the public interest’.

‘It is considered the height of building would impact on the visual amenity and scenic qualities of the coast, taking into account the surrounding coastal and built environment, and the bulk, scale and size of the proposed development,’ Ms Docherty said in her report, contained in the agenda to this week’s meeting.

‘The proposal does not demonstrate it is in keeping with the predominant character of the area, and would result in an intrusion when viewed from public land in the coastal foreshore locality.’

Ms Docherty said staff had raised these concerns with the developer, advising that the application would not be supported by Council and should be withdrawn.

However, at the time of writing, the developer has not withdrawn the application.

It is not the first time the owners of 43 Lawson Street have sought to exceed the height limit with their plans for the site.

The original application, submitted back in March 2015, was recommended for refusal for a range of reasons, including non-compliance with the building height limit.

The matter was deferred, and then came back with a new application in December 2015 with a compliant height limit.

The matter is set to come before this Thursday’s Council planning meeting.

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  1. Let them build high rise North of town, with shops, restaurants and bars. This will take the pressure off the town.
    An Arts precinct should established there too.
    Let’s think big BSC and plan for the future.

    • Why do you not live on the Gold Coast Mark? There you will get all you want and leave us to keep Byron beautiful

  2. The cobble stoned streets we love in European old world villages and cities are 4 to 6 stories. Sure no one wants Goldcoast height ugly buildings but higher density typical to European village communities would create lots of new housing, reduce sprawl & allow the town to thrive. Concentrate on the design profile & street level feel, not just height.

  3. Gees wouldn’t it be better if apartment complexes could be built for locals with reasonable rents attached. Then they could exceed the limit for all I care! Yea, I know I’m dreaming. Besides isn’t there enough tourist accomodation already with so many places on AIrBNB?

    • Just one of the apartment buildings Russia has built in Mariupol would solve the housing issues in Byron, and Russia can build one in less than 6 weeks.


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