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$14mil Pacific Highway service station proposed for New Italy

Submissions for or against the project must be in by August 16

by Susanna Freymark, 07/19/2021, 3 min read

DEVELOPERS behind the proposed highway service station at New Italy have said the design of the project is “deliberately understated”.

Memphis Strategic town planner Wayne Gersbach said the single-storey and ‘shed-like’ design will be constructed of raw, uncoloured concrete with a Colourbond roof and cladding to complement, and not overawe the nearby New Italy Museum buildings.

“It will be subtle and low-key,” Mr Gersbach said.

“The design incorporates a pergola-covered outdoor eating area that is intended to be landscaped and decorated to match the New Italy museum complex.”

“The site’s layout encourages motorists to make use of the New Italy facilities via the Park of Peace that links the two projects.”

A Development Application from New Italy Holdings has been lodged with Richmond Valley Council for the construction of the 24-hour $14.7mil  service station and restaurant complex on the Pacific Hwy at New Italy.

The service station will have a convenience store, four separate cafes or restaurants - two of them with drive-through facilities and a truckies area with shower, gym and laundry facilities and a separate lounge.

The proposal features 10 double-sided car fuel pumps and a five-bay electric vehicle charging area, as well as a heavy vehicle refuelling area with four high flow fuel pumps.

An artist’s impression of the new service station at New Italy. Photo: Contributed

The project sits next to the existing New Italy Museum which will be accessed through an existing slip road, provided as part of the Pacific Highway’s recent upgrade to service New Italy.

There are plans for an outside pergola, perhaps including an Italian theme, Mr Gersbach said. The idea was to entice travellers to visit the museum.

The highway upgrade has involved the bypassing of more than 30 towns and villages, including Woodburn and Broadwater which previously provided services to highway traffic.

The nearest service station on the highway is Ballina unless travellers leave the highway to stop at Woodburn.

“Between Ballina and Coffs, people will be looking for a service centre,” Mr Gersbach said.

The New Italy site was relatively isolated, he said.

“We can put it there and not directly impact on neighbours.”

Noise and environmental concerns and biodiversity as well as safety entering and leaving the station will be addressed.

New Italy Holdings Pty Ltd director Joseph Sgro said the application will have a substantially positive economic and social impact and can be safely accommodated without ecological harm, bushfire threat or any negative impact on the site’s heritage.

The DA will be on exhibition until Monday, August 16.

The developer pans to hold a community meeting with residents once they have had the opportunity to look at the DA.

Richmond Valley Council general manger Vaughan Macdonald said while the council was the consent authority, the proposal would be referred to Natural Resource Access Regulator, the Heritage Council of NSW and other NSW Government agencies.

Mr Macdonald said anyone could formally submit comments to support or oppose the development application during the exhibition period.

However, he said Council would not consider anonymous submissions.

The application and support documents can be viewed on the council’s website here.

Submissions close at 4pm on Monday, August 16. Those wishing to lodge a submission can do so by posting it to Locked Bag 10 Casino NSW 2470, online here or by emailing it to

Plans have been submitted to Richmond Valley Council for a service station at new Italy. 

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