VISION THING: Architect's rendering of plans for Railway Park in Byron Bay.
VISION THING: Architect's rendering of plans for Railway Park in Byron Bay. Contributed

Comment on Railway Park POM: 'Refreshing a much-loved space'

BYRON Shire Council's vision for Railway Park in the Byron Bay CBD is to make sure it remains a key community gathering space for decades to come.

Council has prepared a Draft Plan of Management for Railway Park to guide its future as a focal point for the town of Byron Bay for locals and visitors of all ages.

Council's Major Projects Planner, Rob van Iersel said Railway Park has been a much-loved community space for decades and the Plan of Management is being prepared to ensure that it remains that way for many more years to come.

The main aim of the Draft Plan of Management is to reflect the planned upgrade of the Park, which will refresh the look and feel of the space, provide new play facilities for children and improve the useability of the area for the whole community.

The draft Plan will categorise the park as Community - General Community Use.

"The change from 'park' to 'general community use' highlights the importance of Railway Park as the heart of Byron Bay and promotes its use for passive recreation and a play area, while continuing to allow the use of the space for local gatherings, artisans markets and the installation of artwork,” Mr van Iersel said.

"It is important for the community to understand that a change in categorisation will not have an impact on the community's use of the park both now and into the future - it simply allows Council to consider future leases or licenses for community uses that can demonstrate strong cultural benefit,” he said.

"Some previous examples are the artisans markets, New Year's Eve celebrations, or activities associated with environmental education/ awareness campaigns,” Mr van Iersal said.

Because the Draft Plan of Management will introduce the categorisation of the park as General Community Use, the Local Government Act stipulates that a Public Hearing must be held.

The Public Hearing relating to the Draft Plan of Management will be held at the Council Chambers, Station Street Mullumbimby, on Tuesday 21 August 2018.

The hearing will be chaired by an independent person and all public comments will be acknowledged. The independent Chair will provide a report to Council at the conclusion of the Hearing, providing recommendations regarding the proposed categorisation of the Park.

There is the opportunity for community members to speak at the Hearing to share their opinions and expand on their written submissions.

Anyone wishing to speak at the hearing should register via email to Jamie.vaniersel@byron. by Tuesday 14 August.