Recognising the impact of tourism on the Byron Shire, the NSW Government has announced details of $25 million worth of projects for the Byron Shire.
The funding is from the NSW Government’s Tourism Impacts Infrastructure Election Commitment which is providing two grants to help Byron Shire Council manage the impact of tourism.
One grant is for $20 million to help Council improve its road network. The second grant of $5 million is to support projects that towns that are impacted by tourism have long wanted or needed.
Byron Shire Mayor, Simon Richardson joined NSW Parliamentary Secretary for Energy and the Arts, the Hon. Ben Franklin MLC, to announce the projects being funded by the grants that will be rolled out over the next three years.
“During last year’s State Election, I announced this commitment which I am proud to be delivering today,” Mr Franklin said.
“The value of Byron Shire tourism to our state is substantial which is why I have strongly advocated that the Government provide a greater level of support in return.
“That is what this announcement does,” he said.
“On behalf of Council I sincerely thank Ben Franklin, and the NSW Government, for this much-needed injection of money into our Shire which, for many years, has struggled to accommodate the increasing numbers of tourists who come here for the ‘Byron’ experience,” Byron Shire Mayor, Simon Richardson said.
“With more than 2.1 million visitors a year Council really struggles to provide the infrastructure for local residents and businesses as well as tourists,” Mayor Richardson said.
“The fact that for many years elected Councils prioritised other areas above funding for road infrastructure has meant our road networks are in desperate need of repair and with a rate base of only 15,1800 we just don’t have the money,” he said.
“Added to Council’s more recent funding increases on roads and other infrastructure, this injection of money will have a massive impact and we are incredibly blown away by the tenacity shown by Ben to fight against any moves to reallocate this election promised fund to deliver to us a ‘once in a generation’ opportunity to get cracking on fixing our roads,” Mayor Richardson said.
The $20 million road fund will deliver:
- $10.15 million of improvements for:
- Kingsley St (Byron Bay)
- Carlyle St (Byron Bay)
- Lawson St (Byron Bay)
- Bayshore Drive (Byron Bay)
- Fern St (Mullumbimby)
- Stuart St (Mullumbimby)
- Tincogan St (Mullumbimby)
- Main Arm Rd (Mullumbimby – Main Arm)
- Old Bangalow Rd (Talofa)
- $3.8 million for Shire-wide asphalt overlay program
- $3.65 million for Shire-wide reseal program
- $2.4 million for Shire-wide patching program
The $5 million grant to support tourism communities will provide:
- $2.05 million for the Sandhills Estate activation including a new skatepark and recreation precinct linking the Byron Bay Rec Grounds, Main Beach, Tennyson St, Massinger St and Byron St
- $1.57 million for completion of the Byron Bay to Suffolk Park cycle path
- $945,000 for the reconstruction and upgrade of South Arm carpark at Brunswick Heads
- $435,000 to improve public facilities at Byron Bay’s Main Beach.
“This $25 million will make an enormous difference to our Shire, especially for local residents, and it is an enormous step towards getting our infrastructure upgrades back on track,” Mayor Richardson said.
“I thank Mayor Richardson and Byron Shire Council for the incredibly constructive way that they have worked with the Government to deliver this outcome,” Mr Franklin said.
“It is one that every resident of our Shire will benefit from,” he said.