Community Outcomes for Sth Byron
Report No. 16.3
This is been an exciting, innovative and to be honest- quite nerve-wracking experience. We decided to take a risk and to give ourselves a tough goal: to decontaminate an area, provide a community outcome and enhance the environmental values within the old South Byron STP site, without selling the land and by working alongside a private group or consortium. We are well on our way to realising this vision and creating this reality.
There are a few great proposals submitted and we will now explore these more thoroughly and bring them forward to the community for feedback. Proposals going to the next stage include establishing a school, a wellness centre, aged-care and affordable housing.
This area has never been open and available for the community, and currently we can only enjoy its view from outside a fence; soon we should finally gain access to the site. It would be irresponsible for council to spend around $2 million to decontaminate an area and then only open it up as open space with an ongoing cost to maintain, especially when we have an opportunity to decontaminate it without rate payers money and to get community benefits and environmental benefits. Also, the money we save or generate can then be used instead on better stormwater infrastructure or wider catchment rehabilitation to make Byron will more flood resistant and environmentally rich.
Pleasingly, those behind proposals to establish an environmental centre on the site will be engaged to see if this great outcome could occur on a better site, with both greater environmental qualities and without decontamination- these conditions currently exist at the Valances road STP and West Byron STP.