Mayor hopeful on temple movement

THE long-talked about Shaolin temple development south of Nowra is edging closer to approval.

CONCEPT: An artist’s impression of the $360 million Shaolin temple proposal planned for Falls Creek.

CONCEPT: An artist’s impression of the $360 million Shaolin temple proposal planned for Falls Creek.

Shoalhaven Mayor Joanna Gash, general manager Russ Pigg, director Corporate and Community Services Tim Fletcher and Patrick Pang from the Shaolin Group met with South Coast MP Shelley Hancock and the parliamentary secretary for planning in Sydney last week.

“The discussions were frank and forthright and we hope to see movement on the development in the coming weeks,” Cr Gash said.

The $360 million proposal comprises a Buddhist temple sanctuary complex, kung-fu academy, 500-bed four-star hotel, commercial shopping precinct and community centre and permanent housing residential development for the Falls Creek area.

There has been much criticism of the development with the last hitch coming from the Roads and Maritime Services insisting on road improvements at the intersection of the Princes Highway and Forest Road.

“It has been a frustrating time trying to get this development approved,” Cr Gash said.

“There have been a number of issues and they all seem to be resolved and we expect a concept plan to be submitted to the Planning Assessment Commission.

“Once that is approved, there would still be further development approvals needed from council but it at least gives the project some security.

“It is a step forward.”

Cr Gash expected the proposal would be in the hands of PAC for four to six weeks.

“I would say PAC would probably come to the area and hold community meetings to find out what is going on,” she said.

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