Ocean Shores began with a Deed of Agreement between the developers, Wendell West Company Pty. Ltd, the State Planning Authority, the Council of Byron Shire, Rous County Council, the Council of the Municipality of Mullumbimby, hereafter called the electricity supply authority. The Deed was signed on 16th April 1969. It was the first privately built town in Australia to have underground power, layback kerb and guttering and curvilinear roads instead of the traditional grid iron pattern.
There were covenants to protect the type of dwellings allowed including no flat (asbestos) sheeting or corrugated asbestos or iron roofing, generous front and side boundary setbacks, no front fences, one dwelling per lot. It is the only town founded in the Byron Shire in the 20th Century.

The Roundhouse Administration and Sales Centre was opened by the then Minister for Housing and Co-operative Societies S. T. Stephens MLA on 29th March 1969. The whole estate was designed by Robert Sully, renowned Californian urban planner and architect. He also designed the Roundhouse and provided plans for an Aboriginal Art Gallery which was never built.

Infrastructure was entirely built by the developers, including the Orana Bridge over Marshall’s Creek, a sewerage treatment plant that still services Ocean Shores and district, water reservoirs, roads, lakes, golf course and club house, a sales office on Balemo Drive (now the Pacific Palms Motel) and the Capricornia Canal at North Ocean Shores. Construction of the estate provided employment for many local residents. Underground power was provided in conjunction with the Mullumbimby Municipality.

Jan Mangleson
Ocean Shores Community Association (OSCA)