GRAND DESIGNS: An artist’s impression of the proposed $31 million Reside Living development.
GRAND DESIGNS: An artist’s impression of the proposed $31 million Reside Living development. Contributed

Debate over riverfront proposal

PLANS for a new $31 million waterfront development in Ballina could get the green light at this week's council meeting.

An application for the shop-top development - which is slated for the Sundowner Motel site on the corner of Kerr and River Streets - was lodged by Reside Living in October last year.

The existing motel would be demolished to make way for the 34-unit building.

It would also include a restaurant and six commercial tenancies, and land would be dedicated for a public boardwalk along the riverfront.

Council staff have recommended approval, and a decision will be made by councillors on Thursday.

One of the issues in assessing the application has been the height of the proposed building.

It is planned to have an architectural roof feature and the total height of the building would be 23.6m - well above the building height limit of 18m.

But the council staff report explains that there is ambiguity in the building height controls clause.

To rectify the situation in the future, the council is preparing a new planning proposal, which is being finalised.

Staff also raised concerns about loading and unloading facilities, parking, and the amount of land to be dedicated to the council.

But the staff report also highlights a number of positives associated with the Reside Living development.

These include public access along the riverfront; the provision of new retail, restaurant and business opportunities; new medium density housing in the town centre; and a "well designed, architecturally distinctive, contemporary building" at the gateway to the CBD.

The Reside Living development application will be debated at the Ballina Shire Council's meeting on Thursday.

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