Councillor amazed at `hysteria' over extra Kiama petrol station

Veteran Kiama councillor Warren Steel says he is "amazed at the hysteria" surrounding the council's plans for a petrol station on Riverside Drive at Bombo.

On May 18, a Facebook group called "Save Kiama Downs from Petrol & Fast Food Giants" was established and within days had attracted 1200 "likes".

Cr Steel has been advocating for a second petrol station in the Kiama area since the closure of the Mobil at Kiama Heights in 2003, which left Addison's Corner Garage as the town's only fuel provider.

The Bombo site in question is south-east of the Bombo interchange near the Riverside Drive roundabout, on land owned mainly by RailCorp. The council is looking to buy the site itself, for development of a service station.

Kiama Councillor Warren Steel.

Kiama Councillor Warren Steel.

"For the last 10 years I have had that many people tell me we need a second service station it is ridiculous," Cr Steel said.

"We have looked at every site possible and this is by far the best one."

Cr Steel said the idea of a fast-food outlet had "come out of left field" and he was dead against it.

"At best there will be a convenience store to support the petrol station," he said.

Cr Steel lives a stone's throw from the proposed station site in Darien Avenue, but he doesn't believe such a development would devalue his home.

Complicating the issue is that petrol is now being sold from the Glen Fulton Motors building on Collins Street in Kiama's CBD.

The Save Kiama Downs group says its concerns are traffic congestion and access, the impact on Kiama Downs businesses and tourism, and the visual impact.

They also argue that putting a petrol station in the eventual RailCorp quarry redevelopment would be a more suitable option.

The issue is expected to be discussed at Kiama Council's June 23 meeting.


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