Developer Keith Stronach's plan for 172 apartments on the former NBN studios site in Mosbri Crescent has attracted 170 mostly critical submissions, including one from Newcastle East Public School parents.
Local residents and other objectors will hold a rally on Saturday to protest against what they see as an over-development of the site and will raise balloons to show the height of the proposed buildings.
The Newcastle Herald reported in January that development company Crescent Newcastle Pty Ltd had lodged plans for a $67 million apartment complex in a natural amphitheatre at the base of The Hill.
The large number of submissions include one from the school's P&C association and others from the Open Newcastle Inc residents group and the Parks and Playgrounds Movement.
The P&C's letter objects to a "nine-storey high imposing wall of units looking directly into our school playground" and calls for a cut in the height of the proposed buildings and the number of units in them.
"This raises significant unease for us in regard to our children's everyday privacy," it says.
The parents also raise concerns about increasing volumes of traffic around the school and how the development will affect Newcastle East's enrolments, which the association says are at capacity.
Mr Stronach paid the Nine Network $15.65 million last year for the Mosbri Crescent site, which also fronts Kitchener Parade opposite the school.
Nine had applied successfully to Newcastle City Council to rezone the land from low-density to medium-density residential before the site changed hands.
The NSW Department of Planning endorsed the changes in April last year.
The department's executive director regions, Steve Murray, said at the time that new height limits for the site would allow for a “maximum building height of seven storeys”, but the plans lodged in January include a nine-storey building.
The project includes 11 two-storey townhouses arranged in an arc around Mosbri Crescent, 161 units spread across three buildings and parking for 242 cars.
The council's Local Planning Strategy, updated in 2015, says The Hill will need to accommodate another 39 dwellings by 2031, based on forecasts by population consultants .id.
"The proposed development represents more than four times the number of dwellings that it is estimated the suburb will require," the Open Newcastle Inc submission says.
The group's letter also questions whether the proposal meets the stated objective of the planning strategy to facilitate medium-density housing while "respecting the existing heritage character of the area".
"The proposed development clearly serves the private interests of the shareholders of Crescent Newcastle Pty Ltd, not the public interest," it says.
Parks and Playgrounds president Doug Lithgow wrote in a submission that the development did not meet the objectives of the site's R3 residential zoning and would have a negative impact on the adjacent Arcadia Park.