Community representatives have criticised council concept plans for Foreshore Park which include the relocation of a community garden, removal of the "frog pond" and a new playground.
City of Newcastle posted the Newcastle Harbour Foreshore Masterplan on its website on Tuesday after two meetings of a "community reference group" last year.
The concept includes a large new playground between Customs House and the carriage shed, two large "event" lawns, a cafe and a landscaped promenade and cycleway along the harbour beside Wharf Road.
Dr Christine Everingham, who represented Newcastle East Residents Group and Sandhills Community Garden on the reference committee, was livid that the plans suggested moving the 14-year-old garden to south of the carriage shed.
"It's ludicrous to imagine we can move the garden," she said.
"We're not going anywhere. They'll either let us stay there or there won't be a community garden.
"I'm really distressed about that because I have put so much time and effort into the park, as has everybody around here."
She said the playground was a good idea but had been "shoehorned" into an inappropriate section of the park too close to residents in the David Cohen Bond Store apartments.
She was also critical of the playground being separated from a new picnic area and the toilets being removed from beside the carriage shed.
Dr Everingham said the council had ignored the community's wishes contained in survey responses and instead dedicated large parts of the park to events.
The co-chair of the National Trust's Hunter branch, Mark Metrikas, agreed with many of Dr Everingham's points and said the plan had been "thrust before us" and the event industry was "having too much input".
A council survey last year showed people's priorities for an upgraded park were more trees (71 per cent), shade (67 per cent), gardens (57 per cent) and accessible toilets (61 per cent).
When asked about spaces in the park, only 24 per cent wanted more room for events, but 64 per cent of people wanted more pop-up activities and 55 per cent more markets and events.
The concept plan includes rings of new trees and a tree-dotted event space on the site of the frog pond.
Dr Everingham said she did not trust the council to deliver on shade after it removed trees for Supercars, an event which is not mentioned in the concept plan but which bumps in and out of the park over nine weeks every year.
Under a services deed between Supercars and the council signed in 2016, the council must notify the motor racing corporation of "all development applications" inside or beside the track.
"This is built around Supercars' footprint," Dr Everingham said.
"It has to be because of that clause in the services deed. They're not being honest about that, either."
The council's project team will host a drop-in session in Civic Park from 10am to 1pm on Saturday.