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Roundhouse campaigners lose final round in housing battle

The Roundhouse site at Ocean Shores
The Roundhouse site at Ocean Shores

OCEAN Shores residents have lost the fight to stop Byron Shire Council's controversial Roundhouse subdivision.

The Land and Environment Court has withdrawn an injunction on council's sale of 11 vacant lots from the 1.4ha site with 360-degree ocean and mountain views.

All blocks have already been sold and are expected to raise several millions of dollars for the council's coffers.

Ocean Shores Community Association tried unsuccessfully to raise funds to buy the land in 2013 so it could be kept as a community asset.

It also submitted proposals to build a cultural centre on the site which council rejected.

The group was awarded a two-week injunction last month stopping the sale until the council's appeal was heard in court.

Justice Nicola Pain found council's rezoning of the property from community to operational land was all above board and allowed the sales to go ahead.

OSCA president Jan Mangleson was proud her community did not back down, even if they were ultimately unsuccessful.

"It has been an enormous struggle," she said.

"I'm certain it is something that has brought the Ocean Shores community together.

"Our town is not even 50 years old ... and I'm confident we have a bright future here in Ocean Shores.

"At least we didn't lie down and just let the juggernaut ride over us."

Mrs Mangleson, a former Byron Shire councillor, said the community started seriously working to save the Roundhouse land from development in 2009.

"In 2010, the Roundhouse Action Group submitted a community business plan concept that would have used the site for a magnificent cultural centre," she said.

"But the councillors virtually laughed at us ... they voted almost immediately to go ahead with the subdivision.

"Overwhelmingly, people wanted to keep it for the community. But they were ignored." -APN NEWSDESK

Topics:  beach byron bay council development land and environment court local government nswpol nsw politics ocean shores protest



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