102 Smith Street, Wollongong NSW 2500

Change of use to microbrewery Modification B - delete condition 14

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We found this application for you on the planning authority's website about 1 month ago. It was received by them 7 days earlier.

(Source: Wollongong City Council, reference DA-2020/542/B)

13 Comments

Have your say by adding your own comment.

  1. Ash Miller commented

    Really looking forward to this. Great step in the right direction for Wollongong.

  2. Rebecca Blackwell commented

    To whom it may concern, in relation to having the roller door closed, I do believe it will be fine having it open. It will not have a negative impact as there is already noise from surrounding developments, night clubs, businesses and traffic.

  3. Belinda Webb commented

    In relation to the proposed clause deletion - it is more than reasonable to suggest the roller door be allowed to be open during hours of operation, at it least for ventilation and fresh air into the microbrewery.

    The ambience created with the open roller door will significantly improve the proposed venue and what it offers the community.
    kind regards

  4. Raymond Poletto commented

    I think the applicant makes some very valid points in his letter. We live in the commercial precinct of Wollongong, with many café’s and restaurants generating noise from the same type of business, which is what is expected. I think it would be very unfair not to allow this when it is allowed for other local businesses. This type of business is exactly what Wollongong needs right now for the growth of our region.

  5. David commented

    I have some concerns about the noise that would be generated if this door was allowed to be open during the evening - with the proposed maximum of 100 patrons the noise with the roller door open would almost certainly carry to nearby residences across the street. With opening hours listed as 10pm on weekdays and 12 midnight on weekends this would likely be a disturbance for the many residents who live nearby, with many bedrooms facing directly on to Smith St right across from the business. I am also concerned the open roller door would lead to the car park area acting as a potential beer garden for the patrons who would naturally migrate outside. I do however think it is reasonable for the roller door to be open during normal daytime business hours (9am-5pm) - as the applicant rightly points out in his letter this door would make sense as a delivery point for the business. I wish the business well and agree that this type of establishment will make a welcome addition to Wollongong.

  6. Ryan Aitchison commented

    To the Wollongong City Council,

    The implications of a successful Microbrewery on the economy of our region has already been proven with the current operations in place not being able to meet demand. Wollongong should be finding ways of successfully stimulating the viability of this business, especially with us heading directly into some challenging economic times. Here's some hard faces -

    - Local Microbreweries have the ability to produce world class beer tailored to the tastes of their local community.
    - 90% of beer consumed is currently owned offshore meaning billions are stripped from our economy each year. The includes the big brands like VB, Tooheys New, Great Northern etc.
    - Although most internationals are brewed in AUS, almost all ingredients are imported once again minimizing the positive impact this sector could have on our local and nations economy.
    - It takes 7 times more labour to produce a locally brewed beer than the mass produced foreign owned beer as their brewing and cleaning processes are completely automated
    - If the Illawarra consumed nothing but locally produced beer, this would produce over 500 new jobs in our region alone and would see millions of dollars hit our economy that would have been distributed among shareholders and offshore companies.
    - There has been NO precedence of any noise issues eventuating from the Microbreweries currently operating locally. Trying to regulate a problem that doesn't exist is overkill.
    - The door being open or closed does not change the allowable DB level which is audible from neighboring residents. It simply allows this business to stand a fighting chance due to the vast difference in the retail environment it will offer.

    In conclusion, for a microbrewery to have any chance of making it past the crucial 1yr benchmark, it relies on it's 'cellar door' operation to not only introduce people to their range of beer and how they're produced, but also to generate a viable retail sector so it can pay it's team of LOCAL staff, pay its LOCAL rates/taxes and marketing expenses which in effect will be marketing The Gong.

    Wollongong, you've got some VERY low handing fruit here. Please use a common sense approach and don't pander to the David's of the world.

    You're Truly
    Ryan Aitchison
    The Illawarra Hotel

  7. Jessica Miller commented

    This microbrewery will be a fantastic addition to Wollongong’s local economy and help diversify the city’s product and service offering to both residents and visitors. In regards to the open roller door, I feel it’s an important allow this to support ambiance, ventilation and efficient operation of the business. Precedent for this type of open air access is evident in many other venues in the surrounding area and broader CBD. For instance, Amigos has open air dining with greater capacity and is equally, if not closer to residents in the area. Similarly venues such as Dagwood and Icon have a similar vibe and have proven to successfully manage noise and loitering. To restrict the roller door operation of this business would be unfair and out of character with what currently prevails in the area. It’s important to note that this is not a night club, it is a microbrewery which hopes to attract a sophisticated and mature clientele. Let’s work to support local small business in their pursuit for success rather than try to hinder them from the start.

  8. David commented

    As a followup to my original post and to address Ryan's comment - I didn't think I was in any way asking the council to "pander" to my views, I was simply offering my opinion as one of the local residents who will be impacted by the increased noise generated from the business, which I believe is the point of this platform. Ryan, who in addition to pulling a tasty pint at the Illawarra Hotel, is clearly a skilled economic analyst and budding audio engineer - so I'll choose not to respond to his detailed analysis and "hard faces"(sp?) and assume his figures are correct.

    I am however now motivated to make a few extra comments in regards to the proposed deletion of clause 14, which I will leave for consideration below.

    In reference to the letter dated 10th August 2020 addressed to the Wollongong City Council.

    In regards to allowing natural light to enter the premises (point 4). I don't believe that would be of such concern in the evenings (when it is often dark) - I imagine there would be some type of other lighting in place throughout the brewery rather than relying on an open roller door. The letter also discusses the need for air flow and ventilation (point 3), but I envisage that a microbrewery would probably have other measures in place for temperature control rather than relying solely on opening a door to achieve this end. The letter also makes reference to erecting a fence around the parking and loading area in order to contain patrons, parking and noise from related activities (point 5). While I am not an audio engineer by trade, I'm uncertain what type of fence would adequately contain the noise generated from people gathering in the car park area. I imagine that the current flimsy wire fence in place would likely need a substantial upgrade.

    The letter also makes reference (point 6) to allowing food trucks and vendors to operate and park within the space directly outside the roller door. Again, the amount of noise that this would generate from patrons standing outside drinking and eating in this car park area/beer garden would undoubtedly be a disturbance to the residents located across the street - particularly if this continues late into the evening. Allowing patrons to congregate in this car park area would also likely lead to increased security needs and employee numbers in order to to adequately monitor clientele activities. The external consultation from the Wollongong Licensing Police reinforces these points, stating in the original assessment report (Section 1.4.2) that:

    1.Nearby residential addresses – The proposed location is directly across the road from existing
    residential premises, with its front entrance facing these premises. Noise levels may be a concern to these residents. At this time the application does not indicate any intention to have live music, however the general noise of 100 patrons may cause issue.

    2. Migration to and from the venue. – The proposed venue is not on the standard migration route between the larger licenced venues in the Wollongong CBD, however there are licensed premises to the north and South of the location. The addition of another licenced premise in this area may cause increased migration around the vicinity, adding to previously mentioned noise issues, as well as instances of anti-social behaviour.

    3. Use of area described as car park – Again, the applicant does not indicate that this area will be utilised for patrons, however instances have occurred at other locations where external carparks begin to be utilised as a “beer garden” type areas once a premises is operating. This is especially prevalent in the warmer months. This causes issues in relation to liquor licensing, as well as DA breaches and boundaries. Police would ask that the non-use of the carpark area is clearly addressed in the development consent.

    In conclusion, and as I stated in my original post - I would have no objection if clause 14 was modified to allow for the roller door to be open in normal business hours for deliveries. I would like to once again welcome the business to the area and wish them the best, as I think a microbrewery will make a nice addition to the Wollongong CBD area. I’m sure the commercial interests of the new business can be adequately weighed against the concerns of the established local residents, with the right balance hopefully found.

  9. Casey Brown commented

    As a nearby resident and mum of primary school aged kids I would like to voice my concern about the deletion of clause #14 in the application.
    The Microbrewery has already got the go-ahead to operate in this location, as of July this year. However with operational times up until 10pm Sunday-Thursday and midnight on Fri-Sat, I am truly concerned about the disturbance to nearby residents from the microbrewery, and from inebriated patrons leaving the brewery. I would like to request that clause #14 remain in the licensing agreement for this business.
    I would like to request that IF the roller door remains open during daylight hours that it is closed before 8pm to reduce the noise in the evenings (EVERY evening) to help all the families who live across the road. This is surely not too much to ask?

    I am also very concerned by the operator's comments in his recent application to delete clause #14: "we also see this as an opportunity to utilise the roller door and loading/parking spaces on the private land by allowing other small business food vendors to park and trade". This is in direct violation of the recommendation from the licensing police report which states: "Police would ask that the non-use of the carpark area is clearly addressed in the development consent." The original application also mentioned about the car-parking: "Two existing spaces are available to the proposed development and these would be occupied by staff. The proposal constitutes a shortfall of 1 space." So this again indicates that the space outside the roller door should not be used for anything other than car parking.

    Please consider the families across the road in your decision!

  10. Mitchell Robertson commented

    Just another addition to the wollongong area that will thrive and benefit the local people.

    Noise impacts will be minimal as collegians and illawarra hotel both in close proximity of the location. Not to mention the ever busy st that runs just up the road

    Being a smaller establishment the noise that would be generated from there would be nil to minor.

    Given the recent impact of Covid-19 I applaud them for taking a risk and branching out to establish this niche and thriving market.

    We in turn should be supporting

    Good luck to them!

  11. Mitchell Robertson commented

    Just another addition to the wollongong area that will thrive and benefit the local people.

    Noise impacts will be minimal as collegians and illawarra hotel both in close proximity of the location. Not to mention the ever busy st that runs just up the road

    Being a smaller establishment the noise that would be generated from there would be nil to minor.

    Given the recent impact of Covid-19 I applaud them for taking a risk and branching out to establish this niche and thriving market.

    We in turn should be supporting

    Good luck to them!

  12. Wayne Toomey commented

    We need to support this local initiative and the less strings attached the better. I have lived above the now Adina apartments (19 market street) which was located walking distance to the harp, dagwoods underneath and back in the day a nightclub across the road. Some of these venues operated past midnight and the disturbance was minimal - the odd loud exhaust car was more disturbing. Micro-brewery venues are also attracting a different demographic than your old school pubs/nightlife venues which sounds like the demographic that some of the above comments are referring to so keep this in mind and possibly go visit a micro-brewery venue to see what the atmosphere is like and you will find it is relaxed. Also a congregation of people socialising at a micro-brewery is actually a comforting white noise that may actually help your sleeping patterns. Good to keep in mind that venues licence finishing time isn't always the time that they operate to as you will find that they will generally slow service 30 minutes prior to ensure last drinks are called and service stops before the licence finishing time. The hours proposed seem very reasonable for a hospitality venue and will give them a fair go to compete in the local market. Food trucks are an awesome idea and bring a lot of great food to our destination, these are important attraction points for boosting tourism attraction and things to do for our visitor economy which is where our focus needs to be to support the wider hospitality/tourism sector that is a backbone of our economy which has been the hardest hit through these times. Happy to offer any support if needed as this will be a great addition to Wollongong. Full support.

  13. Craig Wilson commented

    me and my mates cant wait to check this place and easily stumble home after a big friday and satrday nite. just what the gong needs! hoping they will have 2 for 1 speciels or other deals during the week, also lookin forward to a taco and kebab with my beer if they get the food trucks up and runnin as thats a great idea. some bands on the weekend would be a great idea to. good luck boys-count me in!

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