Paul Jones, architect and Butler Street home owner has founded the
Paul Jones, architect and Butler Street home owner has founded the "Grab the Rail" campaign proposing the new Byron Bypass use a section of the old railway within town. Megan Kinninment

Byron bypass route approved on Butler St despite opposition

BYRON Shire Council yesterday took a step closer to a long-awaited bypass for the town's CBD by voting in a preferred Butler St route.

The decision followed a staff recommendation the town CBD be bypassed via the Shirley St roundabout, extending Butler St and exiting at Mitre 10.

The Butler St route has been opposed by Butler St residents, who want the disused rail corridor to be used instead.

Butler St resident and founder of Grab the Rail community group Paul Jones yesterday told the meeting the decision would cost the council dearly in compensation to Butler St residents.

Mayor Simon Richardson asked fellow councillors to delay the bypass decision for one month to allow the council to write to the State Government and ask if the rail corridor could be leased as requested by the Grab the Rail group.

"We need to be able to look the community in the eye and say we have tried our best, and if State Rail says no we can go with the Butler St plan."

However, Cr Richardson's amendment to ask State Rail to lease the rail corridor was defeated.

Another bypass alternative proposed by Greens councillor Rose Wanchap to divert Shirley St traffic through the council-owned First Sun Caravan Park on to Bay St outside the Beach Hotel was also defeated - although the idea is to be canvassed in the development of the upcoming masterplan for the town.


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