AN aged care facility for the homeless has been recommended for approval by Orange City Council staff.
Mission Australia lodged a development application in May for a 60-room facility, which would be targeted at elderly people who were homeless, at risk of becoming homeless, or too socially or financially disadvantaged to access mainstream aged care services.
Located between Park Drive and Huntley Road, the rooms would be grouped in four pods, with communal dining and lounge areas, a cafe, activity rooms and 18 car parking spaces.
Council staff assessing the application also recommended the land be subdivided into two lots to give Mission Australia 1.6 hectares to build the project, however it noted NSW Health management had still not completed a master plan for the Bloomfield precinct.
“It is considered that a master plan is considered necessary to guide the development that is occurring within this precinct in which much of infrastructure, particularly roads, entrances and parking are not of adequate standard to accommodate the increase in traffic generated by this new development whilst protecting the heritage significance of the precinct,” the report said.
“It is considered unfortunate that council has again been placed in a situation where it is required to consider applications for further development ... without the guidance of a master plan.”
Staff expressed concerns about the ability to maintain uniformity across the precinct if the site was subdivided, however the proposal complied with planning guidelines.
They also said the site featured possible habitat for native species including the superb parrot and the squirrel glider and have required extra trees to be planted to offset weeding, however they judged the benefits of the development would outweigh its impact on the landscape.
Councillors will consider the proposal on Tuesday night and approval from Heritage NSW will be required before construction can start.
Potential residents will need to undergo an assessment by an aged care assessment team and meet concessional criteria to qualify.