A major development is set to go ahead at Goonellabah after approval by the New South Wales Joint Regional Planning Panel.
At a cost of close to $23 million, the residential proposal will create 222 lots.
Chair of the Northern Regional Planning Panel, Garry West said ‘Altitude 2480’ on Fischer Street would fill a housing hole in the Lismore area and will be marketed at low to middle income earners.
“Not what you would call affordable housing, the (dwellings) don’t fit in that category, it’s a private development, not what you would call affordable but certainly low cost,” Mr West said.
The panel was particularly impressed with the mix of housing, what’s called integrated housing with a blend of one and two bedroom options.
While there were initial concerns about the development there were no objections at the JRPP meeting.
There were concerns about the loss of koala trees but Mr West said the proponent came up with a design which met all the environmental requirements, including koala protection.
Some koala trees will go, but there will be compensatory planting and key koala corridors will be retained.
Lismore’s Mayor Jenny Dowell is delighted with the design and believes the concept breaks new ground without using up new land.
“I was really impressed and so was the panel, this is what the council has been wanting to see ever since we developed our housing strategy and that is some good quality one and two bedroom units,” Cr Dowell said.
The proposal makes use of an existing residential area without the need to dig up green fields, saving the developer, the council and ultimately the home buyer, big dollars.
Jenny Dowell said that opens a market for those who struggle to get into home ownership but who also form a key part of the community.
“Key workers, our nurses, paramedics, police, fire brigade, teachers, these will be units that people will buy because they will be strata-titled and so we’re thrilled with this, it ticks lots of boxes,” Cr Dowell said.
“We also know that some older people and professional couples don’t necessarily want to be living in a traditional house with a large block,” she said.
The Mayor acknowledged it was a bit of a different style of development than what Lismore was used to.
“The design is a little bit different but we believe it will fit in with the existing residential area, with two, two bedroom units joined with a party wall, but there are several different designs so it won’t look monotone and plenty of open space between the units,” she said.
“It’s an unusual development for Lismore but this is the kind of thing we would like to see and with the road potentially opening up to Invercauld Road it will provide very good access to the university and parts of East Lismore as well,” Cr Dowell said.
A Brisbane-based developer with development experience in south-east Queensland is behind the concept, but this will be the biggest by the firm for the Northern Rivers area.
‘Altitude 2480’ also has local links, with Byron Bay firm Harley Graham Architects behind the design.
There will also be a plan for an on-site solar farm to off-set the energy use from the dwellings.
Source: ABC News