Wolllongong councillor Bede Crasnich plans to revive a controversial $110-million proposal to build a factory outlet and homemaker centre at Kembla Grange.
Developer Leda Holdings' zoning proposal to make way for a 35,000-square metre complex on Wyllie Road was twice rejected by Wollongong City Council last year, amid concerns it did not comply with the city's planning rules.
Those against the proposal also said it would undermine other retail hubs across the city, which were facing major struggles to survive, and reduce the availability of prime industrial land.
Cr Crasnich said he would urge councillors at next week's meeting to support a planning proposal allowing bulky goods and factory outlet uses to be included in the Kembla Grange site's light industrial zoning because there was "overwhelming" community support for the retail development.
"This is by far the most popular item that has come up in our term," he said.
"Last time, I had a petition that I tabled with 750 signatures, which I collected within just five days."
He said the discount-shopping outlet plan had gained widespread support because it would create jobs and stop millions of dollars in retail spending from leaving the Illawarra region.
"I have had people from Batemans Bay and Bega saying that if it was built, they would drive up and come to it," Cr Crasnich said.
"This isn't just for people in Wollongong, just like [the factory outlet in] Homebush isn't just for people in Homebush. We will have people from the South Coast, Wingecarribee and Bowral coming to shop in Wollongong."
Buoyed by a recent councillor vote supporting a similar minor zoning change to allow Kennard's Self Storage facility to be built at Kemblawarra, Cr Crasnich said he was confident of gaining a majority vote at the meeting. Previously, the zoning change was voted down 7-6, with Cr Crasnich, Leigh Colacino, John Dorahy, Michelle Blicavs, Chris Connor and Janice Kershaw outvoted by councillors Greg Petty, Vicki Curran, Jill Merrin, George Takacs, Ann Martin, David Brown and Lord Mayor Gordon Bradbery.
If Cr Crasnich's motion is passed, a draft planning proposal will be prepared to amend the West Dapto Local Environment Plan, which will then need to be considered by NSW Planning.