Freo's View

CLEAR FREO VOTE AGAINST INCREASED CBD HEIGHTS!

Posted in fremantle by freoview on February 20, 2012

The City of Fremantle has finally released the long awaited community survey by CATALYSE.

What stands out for me, besides lots of figures, is that Catalyse consistently features the top figures in the survey, BUT ONCE! That once is when the headline screams: Some locals (around 1 in 3) have opened their minds to the possibilities and benefits of increased height limits. The 58% opposing height increases of up to eight storeys in the CBD, and who presumably have  closed minds, are suddenly less important.

No doubt there is nothing new for any of us that the majority of people believe that the community would benefit from development in the inner city. I am all for it myself. The figures range from a high 77% for the Adelaide Street/Woolstores area to 48% for the Cappuccino Strip.

85% of people surveyed would like more fresh food outlets in the inner city, while more fashion boutiques and department stores are also on the wish list.

The media release put out by the City of Fremantle then engages in spins. I just copy part of it:

The phone survey showed moderate support for increasing height limits of up to eight storeys in areas of the CBD other than the West End. Approximately one in three respondents (34%) supported this in April last year–prior to a community information and engagement program–with 58% against. Interestingly, the focus group exercise later in 2011 found that it was public amenity, obstruction of views, casting of shadows and a perceived increase in traffic congestion that most people were concerned about, not the actual height limits themselves.

 ““There was some concern with building heights, particularly in the phone survey exercise, but later in the focus groups this was deciphered more as concern over the quality of the design of future development and that public amenity would be enhanced, rather than as solely the heights of any new buildings,” Dr Pettitt added.

No Brad Pettitt, that is crap spin stuff!! The people concerned about public amenity, obstruction of views, casting shadows, and perceived traffic increase in traffic congestion, were concerned about heights! Excessive heights would create shadows, impact on views and public amenities, and heights would mean many more people living and working in the CBD, which means much more traffic, especially during rush hours!!

This is the message the people of Fremantle gave their local government: 58 % of the people surveyed are against increasing heights to up to eight storeys in the CBD. 87% of people putting submissions in on PSA 49 also reject increasing heights.

The people of Fremantle have spoken loud and clear against increasing heights in the inner city of Fremantle, Mister Mayor. Act now. Change PSA 49 because we do not want it!

Roel Loopers

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