24-hour medical centre, better roads needed in Ballina
THE Ballina Shire is attracting about 500 new residents a year, and planning is under way to ensure they are well catered for in the future.
With 44,208 residents, the shire is now officially bigger than Lismore, which has 43,843 residents.
So what does Ballina need going forward?
We asked our readers, and the responses were varied, although better medical facilities and improved roads were consistent issues raised.
Sarah Tierney wrote: "More parking near all shopping areas including CBD."
Matt Monk: "Two-lane roads and infrastructure for the population."
Glenn Millard: "More mobility scooter pathways."
Jolene Smith: "Cheaper rent and more retail stores."
Terri Hall: "More police, something for young teens, different shops, decent parks."
Tanya Lee: "A bigger hospital obviously."
Jenny Holmes: "Better variety of restaurants."
Helen McNiven: "Do something about the traffic gridlock."
Mastermind Donaghy: "Maybe upgrade the roads in and out of Ballina."
Rosemarie Toynbee: "Would love that ocean pool."
Mac Bob: "Put in a southern on-ramp to the highway at Cumbalum so the thousands that are and will be living there won't be forced through town or up to Ross Lane and back."
Matty John: "Public transport, particularly rail to ease the congested and dangerous roads enabling people to travel safely and in comfort."
Steph Pez: "Better roads, more infrastructure, better public transport."
Nicole Hawkins: "Twenty-four hour medical centre."
Kelsey Carter: "Upgraded roads. More than one way in and out to join Pacific Highway / B60. I can't turn right into River St any more near the bridge. Waits in excess of 10 minutes to make the turn."
Kelsey Carter: "An after-hours doctor so we don't have to clog up the hospital."
Sue Short: "New emergency department and major up grade to the hospital with extra staff. Roads and traffic problems finished in a big hurry. More policing on South Ballina to Evans Head beach."
Grace Moran: "An off ramp from the highway at Cumbalum."
Cathy Hanson: "Four-lane upgrade to all bridges leading into the island."
Louie Lou: "Fix the road going through West Ballina for starters. Should be dual lanes right through."
Rosemary Renwick: "North south road connecting near Aldi to avoid Kerr St."
Nadine Pearse: "Decent steakhouse and fish and chip shop."
Krystal Sunni: "A decent shopping centre! Westfield please buy out Ballina Fair. A new upgraded hospital would be nice as well."
Adele Taco: "Here's to a Westfield!"
Kelly Brown: "Some sort of medical super centre that has doctors open seven days a week, take the burden off the hospital and also has specialists so we aren't having to go into Lismore or the Gold Coast. An upgraded hospital, more sporting facilities and entertainment, upgrade the riverfront and a decent shopping centre. More ambulances and police too."