Yamba Rd route switch

The Yamba bypass map presented at the committee meetings but the route was changed this week.
The Yamba bypass map presented at the committee meetings but the route was changed this week.

IF CLARENCE Valley Council wasn't consulting on the proposed route for the Yamba Bypass, why then has the route changed?

That was the question directed at the council's deputy general manager Rob Donges at this week's ordinary meeting.

Residents were up in arms over the lack of consultation when the report crept its way into council agendas this month.

Developers need the local authority to give an idea of likely location and level of the road to feed into their designs.

While Mr Donges said there was no funding to build the road, because that money pot is $500,000 in deficit, he did need councillors to make a decision on how far they wanted the road to stretch.

Council agreed for it to go to Yamba Rd, but the precise location could still be nipped in the bud with a flora and fauna report flagging potential problems.

Mr Donges said the council would first have to do a Species Impact Statement, which would determine whether the route was environmentally acceptable.

Deputations were heard at the committee meeting and between then and this week's meeting the proposed route (pictured) changed due to developers' concerns.

"It was on their land and we would have to purchase it so we pushed it back onto existing road reserves," Mr Donges said.

"But it's not the most traffic- friendly arrangement."

Cr Margaret McKenna said she didn't understand why, if council wasn't consulting at this stage, this feedback was taken into account.

"Why aren't we exploring the most traffic-friendly option?" she asked.

As part of the motion to continue the plan, the council resolved to include community consultation.

Resident Col Shephard said, while it wasn't an ideal world, he was pragmatic and pleased the council decided to enable consultation and wildlife safeguards.

"We should acknowledge Cr Ian Tiley's recommendation for a holistic approach to it," he said.

Topics:  clarence valley council

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