Aerial shot looking south from Skennars Head towards Ballina.
Photo The Northern Star Archives
Aerial shot looking south from Skennars Head towards Ballina. Photo The Northern Star Archives The Northern Star Archives

Coast Rd traffic light stoush ahead of meeting

DEVELOPERS of a proposed $22 million beach-front housing estate are hosting a community drop-in session amid tensions about traffic light plans for one of the region's most scenic routes.

Intrapac Properties and Elton Consulting will hold the consultation on Saturday about plans to subdivide the prime Coast Rd real estate, commonly known as the Stewart's farm at Skennars Head.

The community meeting comes less than a week after the development application to build 214 dwellings at the site opposite Sharpes Beach was submitted to Ballina Shire Council.

 

Design plans for traffic lights at the intersection of The Coast Rd and Henderson Dr.
Design plans for traffic lights at the intersection of The Coast Rd and Henderson Dr. Intrapac Skennars Head Pty Ltd

Lead planner for the project, Jenny Rudolph said key specialist consultants would be on hand to answer questions about the proposed housing estate, from environmental concerns to traffic management.

Plans to erect traffic lights at the intersection of The Coast Rd and Henderson Dr has attracted strong community opposition.

A Change.org petition established in February has garnered 657 signatures to date against the installation of traffic lights along the scenic roadway connecting Ballina and Lennox Head.

Ballina Shire councillor, Jeff Johnson said he would attend Saturday's session to protest against the placement of "unsightly traffic lights" within the picturesque landscape.

 

Aerial view of land earmarked for beachfront housing estate.
Aerial view of land earmarked for beachfront housing estate. Intrapac Skennars Head Pty Ltd

At the February 23 council meeting, Ballina Shire Council reaffirmed its "long-standing preference" to construct a two-lane roundabout at the intersection.

In the development application, the developers acknowledge the council's preference for a roundabout but it cited "a four-way signalised intersection" as the safer option.

"(Traffic lights) offers greater safety for pedestrians accessing the beach from the residential development (both existing and future) on the western side of The Coast Road as well as the capacity to deal with future increases in traffic volumes as the surrounding area is developed," Intrapac said in a report.

The drop in session will be held at Xavier Catholic College on Saturday from 10am-3pm.

It is the second community consultation meeting following an earlier session hosted in December.

The coastal property opposite Sharpes Beach is owned by long-time Ballina residents, Peter and Ruth Stewart.



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