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South Middlebush Road Temple Application Bumped To October

Prolonged squabbling over whether notices announcing a hearing on a proposed temple on South Middlebush Road forced the Zoning Board of Adjustment to postpone hearing the application until October.

The Board has a standing rule that no new testimony will be heard after 10 p.m. The Board heard two applications prior to the temple’s, which didn’t begin until after 9 p.m., and it was about 9:50 p.m. when the initial matter was resolved.

Two attorneys representing objectors to the plan tried to convince Board members that discrepancies between information included in the published notice about the application and the application itself rendered the application invalid, and therefore unable to be heard by the Board until those discrepancies are cured.

Their argument was that a person reading the notices may have been led to a decision to not oppose the project by what the objectors’ attorneys said was misinformation.

But the applicant’s attorney, Peter Lanfrit, successfully argued that anyone reading the notice would have all the information they’d need to decide whether they should attend the virtual hearing.

The application is for a 21,000-square-foot temple on South Middlebush Road, adjacent to Snyder’s Farm.

Plans are to build a “Trimandir,” a temple which places on equal footing the gods revered by those who follow the three major religions in India: Jainism, Shaivism, and Vaishnavism.

There are 15 Trimandirs in the world, all of which are located in India. This would be the first one in the West.

It is the organization’s goal to have 24 Trimandirs throughout the world, according to its web site.

The application is scheduled to be heard at the Board’s October 1 meeting, assuming all of the applicant’s experts can attend.

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