Green light for aged care home

Despite flooding concerns, the multi-million redevelopment of the RSL Lifecare-owned Bayside @ Byron aged care home at Suffolk Park has been given the go-ahead by the Northern Region Joint Regional Planning Panel.

Under the approval, the existing home, formerly known as Pinevale, in Broken Head Road, will be extensively renovated and 31 two-bedroom self-care units will be built on adjacent land.

The application was the first to be determined locally by the panel formed by the State Government to deal with significant and major developments.

In a submission to the panel, Byron Council said the application should be refused because of the potential for causing increased flood levels in the area during major storm events.

Nearby residents also expressed concerns the development would lead to increased flooding of their properties.
Flood mitigation

Byron Council’s executive manager environment and planning, Ray Darney, told the panel there were concerns about flooding, and major works were required in the catchment area to deal with them.

Mr Darney said if the application was a ‘conventional’ one being dealt with by the council, it would not be approved because of the flooding issues.

But he said the council had come to a position with the applicants for some minor flood-alleviation works near the site.

Those works were aimed at speeding up the flow of water under nearby Beech Drive.

Panel chairman Garry West acknowledged there were flooding issues and while the final outcome was not the perfect solution, it was a way of moving forward.

Mr West said he was pleased the applicant and council were able to agree to an additional condition which would help to upgrade water flow under Beech Drive.

“Substantial flood mitigation works are required upstream of the proposed development. However, it was not possible to consider that work as part of the development application,” he said.

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