Thirroul residents are up in arms over plans to revitalise the village, with a developer proposing to build 82 apartments in the popular shopping complex.
Residents claimed the apartment accommodation is set to block the view of the escarpment from street level, while stripping Thirroul of its sea-side village aesthetic
Shop owner Erica Gorsuch, who is positioned adjacent to the plaza said the redevelopment would not only affect the view, but add to the already congested traffic.
“It is not necessary, more businesses will be added to the complex which will affect other businesses who have been here for a long time, such as my mum’s café and my brothers shop,” she said.
“Thirroul traffic has always been an issue for locals, so adding more residents to the busy area and taking away parking spots is not ideal.
“I can understand it looks old but building a new centre is extreme and will not fit in with Thirroul at all.”
The congested traffic that already plagues Thirroul will only increase with tourists and residents having to travel through the suburb to the northern suburbs.
Retail Worker Chloe Oliver said the accommodation development may threaten her current employment and the music night life in Thirroul.
“It’s a horrible idea, there will be people living closer to live music venues such as The Beaches which can impact the business due to noise restrictions,” she said.
“The traffic will get even worse than it already is, and not just for Thirroul, but for all suburbs to Stanwell Park.
“As an employee of Coles that is currently in the Plaza, my employment will be affected during the construction period.”
Lawrence Hargrave Drive, that runs through Thirroul, is the only road that links Bulli to Stanwell Park.
Many residents claimed that a facelift is believed to be more appropriate for the rundown Thirroul Plaza, with the shopping complex having graffiti and faded paint around its perimeters.
“A new paint job might be needed to reinvent the Plaza rather than causing more trouble to the community,” Mr Gorsuch said.
It is expected that a major project to address the congested traffic conditions could come before any Wollongong Council decision regarding the Plazza redevelopment.
Public submissions for the development application have now closed.