NO ACCESS: O'Malley Close residents at the site of the proposed driveway to St Catherine's.
NO ACCESS: O'Malley Close residents at the site of the proposed driveway to St Catherine's. Tim Jarrett

Aged care car park plan panned

RESIDENTS are concerned a proposal to expand capacity at St Catherine's Aged Care facility will turn their street into a busy thoroughfare.

A Southern Cross Care plan to build a car park at the back of its facility has angered many who live on O'Malley Close in Grafton because it would be only accessed through their street.

"There are a lot of young families on this street and there is no designated park in the area," O'Malley Close resident Peter Smyth said.

"There are so many young children that ride around on scooters and bikes because it is a quiet street, it's a relatively safe place," Mr Smyth said.

"The car park would mean more traffic, which could put children at risk."

O'Malley Close residents largely support an expansion of the facility but are against the carpark access and suspect room is being left for more space for parking.

Carol Johnson, whose property neighbours the proposed access road, said: "We are not against the development itself; our objection is to the access point for the carpark.

"I'm concerned that there won't just be 10 car spaces for staff; in time they might build more and potentially change its purpose," Ms Johnson said.

Southern Cross Care's marketing and communications manager, Adrian Nolan, said there were no plans to change car park capacity and access from North St would also be upgraded for service vehicles and visitor parking.

"We have designated the 10 new spaces as staff parking and all deliveries will still enter via North St," Mr Nolan said.

"We have heard the residents' concern but because of the creek and steep embankment, an alternative access is just not possible."

The expansion at St Catherine's would have an extra 20 beds made available, the creation of a cafe space for residents and gardens upgraded.



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