The HillPDA team could be seen pacing out businesses in Byron Bay Shire last week as part of the Byron Shire employment land study.

When undertaking employment land studies it is important to consider historical, present and future trends to enable land use and planning controls to evolve and adapt to the future demand. In Byron Bay, we are seeing a growing trend of home office and live work arrangements. This is driven by rising affordability issues, lifestyle changes, Airbnb, and the emergence of more creative and online business entrepreneurs.

The Byron Arts and Industrial Estate is a unique case study in which traditional light industrial uses are evolving to encompass a greater number of cafes, live/work premises, retail and creative industries. A number of business owners in the area, suggested that they were attracted to the precinct due to its vibrancy, creative energy and lower rent prices compared to Byron Town Centre.

One of the greatest challenges however, is how to effectively cater for these emerging industries while still supporting the traditional industrial uses. Constraints on car parking and the road network are evident, with increased traffic congestion and limited manoeuvring space for larger vehicles. Reverse amenity impacts and rising rent prices are also likely to emerge with traditional industrial uses anticipated to move to alternate locations with lower land cost and improved infrastructure connectivity.

HillPDA have found the ongoing support of urban services in close proximity to residential areas is critical however the planning controls need to respond to the changing trends.

View more of HillPDA’s work in Employment Land Studies