Sort out traffic problems first: MP
A PROPOSAL to create a new suburb in Byron Bay should not go ahead unless traffic issues are addressed according to Ballina MP Don Page.
The Department of Planning and Infrastructure has on public exhibition a proposal to re-zone 108ha at West Byron for residential, industrial and business use.
The land is to the south of Ewingsdale Rd, from Inghams through to Belongil Creek. With a minimum lot size of 150sq m, there could be more than 1200 new houses, with 70 industrial lots and 40 shops.
But with gridlock on Ewingsdale Rd already a problem during Byron's peak season, Mr Page says a bypass and other traffic measures should be in place before the development proceeds.
"The traffic issues need to be sorted before we can add even a portion of the number of extra cars expected. My comments are not restricted to the bypass, but also to other aspects of traffic management."
Mr Page said Byron Council was looking at options to increase the number of parking spots in town as one way to relieve traffic pressure.
Plans for a bypass that would come into town at the corner of Browning and Johnson Sts are in the design stage with no fixed timeline from Byron Council.
Any bypass road would also be dependent on state and federal government funding.
Traffic studies have indicated that 20-25% of cars on Ewingsdale Rd would use a bypass, however Mr Page said these numbers were speculative.
"It (a bypass) would ease traffic from the centre and would be helpful, but it's not necessarily a silver bullet," he said.
A number of other issues have been raised during the public submission stage including flood mitigation, the impact on Belongil Creek and the strain on other infrastructure such as sewerage and schools.
Deadlines for public submissions close tomorrow.
What issue would you like to see sorted out first?
This poll ended on 06 February 2014.
West Byron suburb development
Byron Bay traffic issues
Neither - there are more important issues
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.