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Wednesday, May 20, 2015 – PAGE 3
By Lisa Pahl
A Hahndorf couple will head to court
in a bid to stop an $8m luxury resort
development on their doorstep.
Prominent Hill Resort was given the go
ahead last week by the Mt Barker Council’s
Development Assessment Panel.
Chinese developer Liu Hong Tao’s plan for the
resort overlooking vines on Windsor Avenue
includes eight high-end suites and a private
restaurant to showcase local food and wine.
Employing up to 24 people, it is hoped the
resort would help draw tourists seeking a
luxury experience in the Hills on their way to
other destinations such as Kangaroo Island.
URPS, the company acting for Mr Tao, said
he was “excited” at the panel’s decision to back
the facility and hoped to start construction “as
soon as possible”, but final approval still rests
with the State’s Development Assessment
But the resort’s closest neighbors, Richard
and Valerie Harris, have vowed to continue
their fight to stop the 225m long facility being
built next door.
The couple are currently building their dream
home on the hill above the resort, which would
be less than 200m from their house.
Rural use conflict
They were was disappointed with the
decision, Mr Harris told The Courier after last
It was out of keeping with the rural area
and would conflict with any rural uses on his
land, such as operating machinery and wood
chopping, he said.
“There are going to be ongoing issues between
me and the council and them (the resort
operators) forever more if this gets built,” he
“I’m not going to move.
“I am going to take it to court.”
Because it is a non-complying application,
opponents have the right to challenge the
decision in the Environment, Resources and
Fellow neighbor Helen Gerard said the
decision was “just such a tragedy” for the area.
“We all bought out here because it’s rural
and we never thought anything like this would
happen,” she said.
National Trust of SA Hahndorf Branch
chairperson Anni Luur Fox said the resort’s
approval set a “very bad example” that could
become a precedent opening up non-complying
development in the watershed area.
“We are not against a five-star resort as such,
what we are really worried about is it’s in the
watershed against the development plan,” she
said. “What’s going to happen next?”
In making their decision, several panel
members agreed the application was “finely
Freeman said the development would impact
on the local landscape and neighbors, but he
did believe it met the criteria for a small-scale
Fellow member Ross Bateup said the proposal
was “quite a sophisticated piece of design”.
“It is a finely balanced issue as to its acceptance
under the provisions under the development
plan,” he said.
URPS director Grazio Maiorano said the
applicant was aware of a possible legal challenge.
“The applicant will be keen to collaborate with
council to justify the approval and the merits of
the development proposal if required,” he said.
The proposal had several influential
supporters, including State Government,
tourism and business leaders who wrote letters
of support for the project to the council ahead of
the panel’s decision.
‘Yes’to Hahndorf resort
I am going
to take it to
The proposed resort
at Hahndorf attracted
strong support from
business and State
before the final decision
was made in its favor.
Valerie and Richard Harris were disappointed
with the decision to allow the development next
to their property.
New, reduced opening hours at the Stirling
police station will take effect next week.
The office will now be open on Tuesday,
Wednesday andThursday from 8.30am-4.30pm.
The hours change on Wednesday, May 27,
and follow a review by Hills police.
Police hours reduced
THE GARDEN DEPOT
YOUR ONE STOP SHOP FOR
ALL YOUR GARDENING NEEDS
14 Secker Road Mount Barker
Open 7 Days
NEW SEASONS BULBS
& NORTHCOTE POTS
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