Casino plans for influx of ?tree change? people

By WILL JACKSON

CASINO'S new land release plan leaves the town well prepared for an influx of people seeking a 'tree change' over the next two decades, says mayor Charlie Cox.

The NSW Government approved the Richmond Valley Council's Casino Urban Land Release Strategy last week.

The council is expecting the town's population to increase by 3000 to more than 16,000 in the next 20 years, and the plan identifies land where residential, commercial and industrial development should take place.

"We're a council that likes to plan," Cr Cox said. "We don't like to be caught by surprise."

With the previous land release plan prepared in 1996 a recent surge in population growth over the past three years prompted the council to prepare a new plan for the town's development.

The strategy is intended to provide sustainable, planned growth in the town for the next 20 years, with reviews and amendments every five years.

It says Casino has enough land zoned for residential development to last for another one or two years, predominantly in the Gays Hill and Coolibah estates, along with the Settlers subdivision on Johnson Street.

However, new land will need to be rezoned from rural to residential after that to allow for further development.

The plan identifies three areas, covering approximately 278ha, suitable for residential development over the next 20 years, and two areas suitable for new industrial development north and east of the town.

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