$2 million refurbishment underway in Jonson Street
TEN Shops and the carpark behind the Byron Bay Cinemas in Jonson Street are currently undergoing a major refurbishment worth around $2m.
The row of shops directly behind the cinema have been demolished and several others at the back of the carpark facing the street are undergoing renovation.
The carpark will also be re-surfaced and three grease traps are being installed underground in three locations in front of the shops.
It is also expected that the facade of the Byron Cinemas will be updated as will the arcade under the cinema.
Work commenced about 5 weeks ago and according to construction manager Tony Latimer the upgrade will take 3 months to complete.
There is plenty of local interest in the site with application to set up a KFC outlet in a former music store on the site rejected by Byron Shire Council in March.
Locals were also concerned that the original plan included the removal of a tree to erect an 8.5m high illuminated sign promoting the store on Jonson St.
However in March this year Byron Shire Councillors voted to reject KFC's bid.
Council staff's main grounds for recommending the refusal was there were 7.39 too few car parking spaces as required under its development controls.
At the time council's executive manager of planning, Ray Darney, said knocking back KFC was defensible as it was consistent with council's development control plan which had been consistently applied for several years.
Mayor Simon Richardson, who staged a high-profile campaign against KFC at the time, declared an interest and did not vote or participate in the debate.
The application was lodged with council in October last year and it received two submissions in support, one neutral, 347 objecting and five petitions in objection to the development with a total of 4197 signatures.