UPDATE: Ballina MP welcomes food hub plan withdrawal
UPDATE: Ballina MP Tamara Smith has welcomed the withdrawal of the Bangalow Food Hub proposal saying:
"This is very welcome news to many residents of Bangalow. I have met with many who live in Bangalow or near the proposed site and their main concerns were about the increase in traffic, especially heavy vehicle traffic, and the effect development at the site would have on their heritage town and on the local koala population.
"I attended the public meeting at Byron Shire Council about the development in August last year and listened to a very concerned community. I was planning to have a statement read out opposing this development at the JRPP meeting in March. I am all for regional business and jobs for our area but this was not the right location for such a large development.
"With land values as they are in our region, protecting our rural buffer zones and resisting ribbon development outside of our villages is vital if we are to retain the character that we all love and that attracts people to the region in the first place.
"Preserving the soil and promise of food growing and agricultural production on RU1 zoned land in our region is vital to our local economy and to the future," said Ms Smith.
President of the Bangalow Chamber of Commerce Jo Millar also thanked both proponents and opponents of the plan for the respectful way they conducted debate over the issue.
ORIGINAL STORY: BYRON Council has confirmed the DA for a $20 MILLION rural industries food hub proposed for 210 Lismore Road on the outskirts of Bangalow has been withdrawn.
A spokesperson for council said the applicant had formally requested the DA for the Food Hub, currently being considered by the States's Joint Regional Planning Panel, be withdrawn.
"This will now be processed and staff will advise the JRPP and also those who made a submission," The spokesman said.
The Rural Industries Food Precinct proposed by Chase Lismore Road Pty Ltd was to have housed expanding Byron Shire food businesses, with Brookfarm and Salumi two potential tenants.
The precinct comprised three 5000sq m rural - agricultural - industrial buildings that could be doubled in size to 10,000sq m in later stages, as well as a 3000sq m rural industry building, three rural industry buildings of 800sq m and a 1000sq m food excellence facility.
Both the Greens and the Nationals joined local residents in opposing the plan.
Late last year Parliamentary Secretary for Northern NSW Ben Franklin said, "After meeting with local residents it was clear to me that the size of the project is not in line with community expectations," he said.
"I believe this is an example of 'great idea, wrong place'," he said.
Greens MP and Koala Protection spokesperson, Dawn Walker also weighed in on the rural industries food hub raising the plight of Bangalow's koala population in State Parliament and throwing her support behind the community campaign against the development.
Proponents Chase Lismore Road Pty Ltd have been contacted for comment.