Planner backs council block

By DAWN COHEN

A PLANNER has turned Ballina Shire Council expectations on their head by supporting their decision to block his rezoning application for the proposed Lennox Head ecovillage.

"I spoke in support of the council," said David Kanaley, environmental planner for the project.

Last Thursday he was asking council to rezone the land south of Ross Lane to permit residential development.

Council staff recommended that the request be refused pending a review of the 2000 Urban Land Release Strategy and completion of a draft structure plan for the Cumbalum Ridge.

"After reading the council report before the meeting, I appreciate its position," Mr Kanaley said.

"It wants to get its own act in order before it considers a major proposal like ours.

"The delay is not a big deal for us, given we are planning a 10-year project. "It will lead council to being more confident about our proposal."

He said they wanted to follow due process.

The eco-village site could include 900 homes.

It aims to be relatively self-sufficient in the provi- sion of its own water and treatment and reuse of sewage.

"The eco-village is not the first of its kind in NSW, but it is the largest," said Mr Kanaley.

"We are planning for passive solar-powered houses.

"We are also considering producing power as well, using active solar cells or methane gas from sewage. We are even looking at wind power."

The project, owned by Mr Richard Walsh who lives in Sydney, may aim for maximum density.

"From our consultations with council staff, we may include terraces and semi-detached residences," said Mr Kanaley. He denies this would be overcrowding for Lennox. "Increased density can stop urban sprawl," he said.



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