Plans for Morisset school and church sites 

A CATHOLIC primary school and adjoining church could become business land under plans for Morisset's town centre.

Councillors last night voted on plans to rezone land on Dora, Yambo and Doyalson streets as well as Wharf Street.

Property at the north-eastern end of Yambo Street and Newcastle Street is also included in the proposal.

If approved, the new zonings would provide small amounts of extra residential and urban centre land.

A council report said the catalyst for rezoning was a Catholic Diocese application lodged in April to rezone St John Vianney Primary School and church into a business area.

"The local parish would like to relocate the church and school to an alternative site in Morisset in order to overcome existing traffic and parking issues and to have a site large enough to accommodate a combined primary and high school," the council report said.

The school celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2012 and had a major refurbishment in 2010.

"The proposal will benefit the residents of Morisset and its surrounds by making a key site available for retail or commercial uses that would currently be difficult to accommodate within the Morisset town centre due to the topography," the council report said.

A spokeswoman for the Maitland-Newcastle diocese said there were no immediate plans to shift the school and no immediate alternate site was identified.

"Any rezoning of the site in no way compels the parish or school to relocate unless they should elect to do so at some future time," the spokeswoman said.

"This is a very long-term plan and is more about future proofing for the parish and school given the anticipated growth in the area and that the current site is land-locked [limiting expansion]."

The council's proposal will be sent to the Department of Planning and Infrastructure for assessment.

Killingworth bushland rezoning

BUSHLAND at Killingworth could be rezoned as a step towards developing a subdivision more than a century old.

The small village south of West Wallsend could expand, with the council potentially rezoning about 15 hectares of land in the town's south.

The council owns about 65 per cent of the property in that area, which was included in a "paper" subdivision of the area made in 1901.

Most of the property would be zoned for conservation under the council's new proposal while 6.64 hectares would become low-density residential land.

It would also turn 33 community land holdings into operational property.

A council timeline showed the proposal may go on public exhibition in November.

New look at Lake Macquarie flood risks

LAKE Macquarie City Council staff will discuss the council's approach to planning for future flood risks at a presentation this morning.

Issues including property values, ability to purchase properties, the cost of flood insurance and development conditions will be discussed.

"It will be an open forum to hear experiences, issues and suggestions from the real estate industry that will provide an opportunity for council to establish a process for continued communication with the industry on planning for future flood risks," a spokeswoman said.

The presentation is at Belmont 16 Footers, The Parade, Belmont at 8am.

Aged could benefit

A REZONING that could allow seniors' housing, restaurants and offices on a former TAFE campus at Charlestown will go to the state government.

Councillors supported seeking a gateway determination to rezone the western portion of the 2.1-hectare Tiral Street site for mixed use including offices, a restaurant and "an information and education facility".

A report to councillors said Uniting Care Ageing planned to use part of the site.

Under the council rezoning proposal, about 5400 square metres will be rezoned for those purposes.

Most of that will remain under a residential zoning. The land, which is also bordered by Dudley Road and James Street, was formerly the Hunter Institute of Technology TAFE's horticultural campus.

The remaining TAFE buildings were demolished in 2011 following the land's sale. The council noted there was a previous unsuccessful push for a gateway determination, but due to alterations to the plan another application should be made.

Cardiff site plan in public eye

A CARDIFF park to replace Harry Ford Reserve has taken a step forward.

Councillors endorsed the plan last night to acquire properties on Veronica and Kelso streets in a bid to turn the 0.38 hectare area into a park.

The project will replace the reserve lost to a Woolworths development in the suburb and will be funded by the proceeds of that sale.

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