1 Broken Head Road redevelopment project

1 Broken Head Road, Byron Bay, is a 7.76 hectare Council-owned site that operated as the South Byron Sewage Treatment Plant (STP) from 1972 until it was decommissioned in 2005 (when the Byron Bay STP commenced operations).  Prior to this, the site hosted "night cart" operations from 1909.

Council commenced a year-long remediation project at this site in March 2019. The remediation project is expected to be finished by the end of 2019 which will enable Council to continue exploring its proposal to retain the 7.76 hectare site as an asset for the community.

1 Broken Head Road - site map


Council resolutions for this project

In 2018, Council agreed to seek Expressions of Interest (EoI) for the masterplanning and redevelopment of the former South Byron Sewage Treatment Plan (STP) at 1 Broken Head Road, Byron Bay.

The EoI process invited suitably qualified and experienced companies/consortia (proponents) who would like to partner with Council in the redevelopment of this site via a 25 year ground lease (or as negotiated with the successful proponent).

The EoI process was held in March 2018 and Council shortlisted four preferred proponents to participate in a selective Request for Tender (RFT) process.  The RFT process ran for six weeks from the beginning of March 2019. 

At a Council Meeting in August 2019, Council resolved to defer a decision about this project, requesting a Councillor workshop to consider the assessment of applications. 


Background on the EoI process
The Expression of Interest (EoI) process, conducted in early 2018, was the first step towards a new approach to assist Council in retaining key, strategically-important sites like 1 Broken Head Road as an asset for the long-term benefit of the Byron Shire community.

Importantly, the EoI also clearly set out retention of the public access way that extends along the northern boundary of the site providing pedestrian and cycle access between Suffolk Park.  It is very clear that public access to the beach and connectivity to Suffolk Park will be maintained.

The EoI set out that while Council has no specified land use or development requirements for the site, the following land uses would be more likely to deliver the strategic objectives of the desired redevelopment: education; eco-residential studios (medium density); high-end tourism (resort style); low-key tourism (affordable camping); conferencing facilities; living and active community (affordable housing and childcare); aged care; and environmental/biodiversity/cultural areas.

About the site
The immediate surrounding locality includes the Arakwal National Park, located opposite the site to the north and east.  Tallow Creek forms the eastern boundary.  Tallow Beach is located on the eastern side of the coastal reserve and is accessed via a footbridge.  The ‘Byron Holiday Park’ caravan park adjoins part of the western and southern boundary.

 Site map of Broken Head Rd STP

If you’d like to join our mailing list to receive updates about this project, email: majorprojects@byron.nsw.gov.au.



Council hasn't specified land use or development requirements for the site and is open to all viable proposals. This could include a broad range of potential future uses such as education, living and active community, diverse housing options, childcare, aged- care and environmental, biodiversity and cultural areas, for example.


Council wants to retain this site for the long-term benefit of the community but cannot afford to remediate it and then maintain it as public parkland.  

Council therefore has two options:

  • To remediate the land, put it on the open market and sell it to the highest bidder.  In this scenario, Council would not retain any control or future benefits from the land and, if the price of the potential development on the site is above $30 million, the NSW Government (via the Joint Regional Planning Panel) would be the consent authority.

  • To enter into a long-term ground lease with a suitable proponent or consortia (potentially from private or non-government sectors, not-for-profit organizations, philanthropists or other groups) whose vision for redevelopment of this site aligns with Council's and takes into account a range of environmental, social and community outcomes. 

The provision of public open space for community and environmental benefit will be a requirement of any long-term lease entered into via the Expression of Interest (conducted in 2018) and selective Request for Tender process currently underway.  This means that public access and community use will be factored into the future use of the site.




The remediation is being undertaken in accordance with the NSW Contaminated Land Management Act 1997 and Council expects to have all work completed by the end of 2019.

Remediation works include excavating and capping soils and contaminated material in a consolidated buffer zone (or berm) and planting a nature corridor on the site to make it safe for potential future redevelopment and use.


The remediation works will not affect the two sewage treatment ponds at the eastern end of the site that are valued by the community as bird habitat. The safety fencing will remain in place as usual as the effluent ponds are not safe for swimming. 


The current public access paths used by the local community to access the beach and take their dogs for a walk will not be affected by the remediation works.

One of Council's key requirements is for the public access ways connecting the community to the beach from Broken Head Road to be retained.  The provision of public open space for community and environmental benefit is also required as a key element of all proposals.