Want a New Near-Beach Office in Byron?

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Easy walking - and cycling - distance of the beach: an artist's rendering of Byron Bay's new mixed-use business hub, Habitat.

Easy walking – and cycling – distance of the beach: an artist’s rendering of Byron Bay’s new mixed-use business hub, Habitat. Supplied

Local Byron Bay developer Brandon Saul is building offices for the growing number of seachangers heading to the northern NSW town.

The $10 million first stage of the Habitat project due for completion by April next year will have 4000 square metres of office, professional and retail spaces with NBN-powered internet access, shared meeting rooms, video conferencing facilities and on-site parking.

A residential second stage that will include 12 New York-style loft-and-studio developments will follow. The total, $60 million, five-hectare development, which will be completed according to demand, is designed to accommodate a “couple of hundred” residents, Mr Saul said.

One of Australia’s most famous beach towns, with a thriving tourism and holiday industry, Byron is known for its environmentally aware and socially conscious residents. Habitat, designed by local architect Dominic Finlay Jones, will also have bicycle parking, electric car charging points, rainwater harvesting and solar power that functions more efficiently from the mix of residential and commercial development. It will also have a communal lap pool, shower and change room facilities.

Crucial to the plan were Byron Shire Council zoning and development control plans to allow smaller dwellings and a mix of both residential and commercial accommodation, Mr Saul said. The mixed-use nature of the site would give local entrepreneurs and small business owners professional facilities from which to conduct national-scale businesses, he said.

“I know of no other model in regional Australia to point to,” said Mr Saul, a promoter of Byron’s Falls Festival and an investor in pop-up luxury accommodation business Flash Camp. “Planning has been forcing people to drive to work ever since they invented the car. This is putting it back together.”

The site Mr Saul purchased 18 years ago was considered by the council even before that as the site for a future sustainable village.

“Council even sent people to Scandinavia to look at what were then, quite revolutionary ‘sustainable’ housing models,” Mr Saul said. “What we’ve designed is in many ways just an extension of that original intent – somewhere people can live and work in a socially and environmentally progressive, village environment.”

Source article:

The Fin Review

by Michael Bleby

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One comment on “Want a New Near-Beach Office in Byron?

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Jenny Bannister on June 18, 2016 3:48 am

What does Mr Saul think of the@ Ekements, Dirty Diesel train ????

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