North Lismore in the zone
A group of landowners and developers have been waiting for 20 years to have the North Lismore Plateau included in the Urban Lands Release Strategy (ULRS) and on Tuesday night they finally got their wish.
A motion put forward by Cr Graham Meineke to amend the ULRS to include land from North Lismore Plateau and Lagoon Grass Rd was carried 6-4 (Cr Clough, Dowell, Houston and Smith against, Battista absent).
“This is important for two major reasons,” Cr Meineke said. “Geographically it is important to get some development on the western side of the CBD. For too long development has all been east, east, east and we need a balance with people on the western side. And we need to get some land in the development pipeline.
“After the required studies have all been done, that land can come online and be developed... But that process is not a short process. After last night’s decision, we won’t see any land developed for six years, but it means landowners have some certainty and in conjunction with Council, can plan for services so we don’t get caught in another Goonellabah situation (where housing growth has exceeded the limits of the sewage treatment plant). We can get an understanding of what infrastructure is required, when and who’s going to pay for it.”
North Lismore Plateau landowner/developer Tony Riordan, who addressed the Council meeting, told The Echo he was “over the moon”.
“Common sense has finally prevailed... There is no reason why the plateau should be excluded. It’s not like it is all ticked off and we can start building houses tomorrow. We still have to go through the re-zoning process... but it’s a step in the right direction,” he said.
“Council staff were still putting up the same old stories about cost and infrastructure. All the costing was originally done by Council back in 1994....those figures were updated by ACN Landmark and put to Council, but they ignored those and used their own, plucked out of the air and Council (staff) said it was too expensive. But the developer pays for infrastructure. I don’t understand this argument that it is too expensive for Council. It’s just bizarre.”