McApproval comes with dimmer
UPDATED 4.17pm: The iconic golden arches of McDonald's will be dimmed when the restaurant arrives in Murwillumbah.
Tweed shire councillors today voted to approve the development.
The dimmer switch, to alleviate concerns from residents about neon lights causing visual pollution along the river, was just one of 124 special conditions added to the approval.
Other conditions included decreasing the size of signs and changing the roofing design so as to be more "reflective of the local context".
Most councillors voted in favour of the fast-food chain's development application, with councillors Katie Milne and Joan van Lieshout the only to vote against.
"I don't agree with McDonald's - it had nothing to do with our image," Cr van Lieshout said.
"Even if we had a green "M" it's not what we want to portray."
Councillor Youngblutt supported the development to breathe new life into South Murwillumbah.
The $3-million development application for the McDonald's also includes an IGA supermarket and space for two other specialty retailers.
"This has been a long time coming for South Murwillumbah," Cr Youngblutt said.
Mayor Barry Longland said voting in favour of the McDonald's was not a decision taken lightly and was knew there were many in the community who opposed the development.
"Telephone towers, brothels and greyhound tracks were difficult decisions to make and now we can add McDonald's to that list," Cr Longland said.
"My association with this town goes back about 50 years and I have seen a lot of changes in the town including the decline in South Murwillumbah."
Councillor Kevin Skinner was absent from the meeting as he was attending the Floodplain Management Association Conference in Batemans Bay.
The restaurant will be built on the former Norco milk factory site, Tweed Valley Way, South Murwillumbah.
Councillor Katie Milne attempted to limit the hours of operation of the McDonald's to 6am to 10pm but it failed to get any support from other councillors.
The restaurant will operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week.