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Another piece of proposed water park puzzle in place in Monroe Co.

By Len Righi, WFMZ.com Reporter
Published On: Jun 10 2013 10:41:48 PM CDT
Updated On: Jun 10 2013 10:43:42 PM CDT
TOBYHANNA TWP., Pa. -

Another piece of the puzzle easily fell into place Monday night for a proposed multi-million dollar water park and resort in Monroe County.

Tobyhanna Township supervisors voted 5-0 to have their solicitor work on an ordinance with neighboring Coolbaugh Township that will allow Tobyhanna jurisdiction over gas lines for the $350 million Kalahari Resort project that will extend into Coolbaugh.

The board made the decision moments after the conclusion of a public hearing that lasted less than a minute and drew no comment from residents or supervisors.

Approval has been just as swift and opposition-free with other legislative moves that will benefit the Kalahari project on 154 acres owned by Pocono Manor off Interstate 380 and Route 940.

For example, last week, the supervisors created a Tax Increment Financing district and an authority that will oversee improvements in the Neighborhood Improvement District where the Kalahari project will be built.

Although there a number of smaller matters still facing the board, final approval of the Neighborhood Improvement Zone is the last major item.

Township solicitor Patrick Armstrong told the supervisors that he is "still trying to piece together all of the parts" of the final NID agreement with the Monroe County Industrial Development Authority, which will issue a 20-year, $26 million bond for off-site improvements, the property owners and other parties. 

That agreement could be ready as soon as June 26, when supervisors will meet to vote on the gas line agreement with Coolbaugh, Armstrong said.

The solicitor also reported that terms of a sewer agreement put together by Tobyhanna and Pocono townships and the Brodhead Creek Regional Authority were ready to be presented to Kalahari and Pocono Manor. 

"We think it's time," Armstrong said, and the supervisors agreed.

After the meeting, Armstrong said Phase 1 of the Kalahari project is expected to generate up to 440,000 gallons of sewage a day into Tobyhanna's system, which will then flow into the Pocono system, and then "swing down" to the BCRA system. 

The first phase of the development would include a 450-room hotel, a 100,0000-square-foot indoor water park, a two-acre outdoor water park, a convention center, an indoor theme park/arcade and retail space with room for two restaurants.

Developers have said Kalahari Resorts could open as early as 2015.