Last ditch Butler Street rally
COMMUNITY and residents groups are coming together for a rally on Sunday against major developments planned for Butler St in Byron Bay.
"This is a last ditch attempt to save much of what is loved and enjoyed about the old western side of town now under threat from the construction of the CBD Bypass and the transport hub near the historic water tower,” Paul Jones from the Butler Street Community Network said.
"The settled heritage of Butler St will be turned into one of the busiest roads in Byron and our pedestrian-friendly neighbourhood transformed into a freeway. Butler St Recreation Reserve will become a parking lot with a major tourist bus interchange just plonked into the residential neighbourhood.
"Up to five hectares of old growth wetlands habitat will be damaged or destroyed, the iconic market quarter will get squeezed out by parking, paving and traffic. All this is slated for development starting within weeks of the upcoming state election.”
John Lazarus of Byron Environment Centre said it was an emergency situation.
"Making undemocratic decisions to destroy classified coastal wetlands right in the middle of Byron Bay is outrageous,” he said.
Sky Wesolowski, a long-time market stall holder, said the Butler St Recreation Reserve was being trashed and abandoned.
Sky said free parking in the Butler St Reserve had caused unprecedented physical damage to a crown reserve protected by legislation.
"Trucks churn up the possibly contaminated sands and campers use the place as a toilet, human faeces greets the stallholders on the market mornings.''
The rally starts at 11am and attendees have been asked to wear hi-vis outfits with fluro colours.