City of Fremantle mayor Dr Brad Pettitt has been appointed to the Heritage Council of Western Australia to represent the interests of local government. Making the announcement today, Heritage Minister Albert Jacob said Dr Pettitt’s appointment followed a rigorous process completed by the Western Australian Local Government Association to identify the best possible candidates.
“Dr Pettitt is extremely well qualified for the position and will make a strong contribution to the work of the Heritage Council,” Mr Jacob said. “With Fremantle having arguably the highest concentration of heritage places of any local government in Western Australia, Dr Pettitt has a unique insight into the challenges and opportunities associated with the ownership and development of our State’s historic places. “With a ‘can do’ approach and track record in driving change through clear vision and collaboration, Dr Pettitt is well placed to support the critical work of the Heritage Council in recognising, protecting and promoting Western Australia’s rich cultural heritage.”
Heritage Council chair Marion Fulker welcomed Dr Pettitt’s appointment. Ms Fulker said the Heritage Council had been working closely with stakeholders and the State Government on a review of the Heritage Act and the project had reached an important stage with new legislation being drafted. “The draft Heritage Bill, which includes the next stage of public consultation, will be published in the coming months. Dr Pettitt’s extensive local government experience, together with his professional qualifications in sustainable development, will be invaluable to the council as this work progresses,” she said.
It is good to see new residential development not far from the Fremantle CBD and THE OTHER SIDE development at Knutsford Street by Landcorp is very welcome, as part of the urban infill project. The 5858sqm site will have a variety of buildings and heights, from single to multi, and town houses, with street level commercial and retail activity.
The Fremantle Works Depot site is also earmarked to become a development site in the not too distant future and that would create a great new residential suburb not far from the golf course and Booyeembara Park, and only a minute or two away from public transport along High Street.
Driving past today I noticed the interesting remnants of an old shed at Knutsford Street and took this photo.
A reminder that WA Police Commissioner Karl O’Callaghan will be at the Fremantle Town Hall this evening at 6 pm to explain the new Community Policing.
It is hard to stay inside when it is such a perfect day. Stunning blue sky, the sun blazing and 20 degrees, so what better way to spend part of the morning than wandering along the shore of the Swan River at North Fremantle. I am planning to go back there soon and shoot more streetscapes and take photos of some of the lovely buildings they got up that way.
I sincerely hope that North Freo will remain with the City of Fremantle when the new council boundaries are announced by State Government in late July. Fingers crossed!
Good to hear that local councillors in Western Australia are due for a three percent pay rise. This is higher than the pay rise for police officers and other public servants, but I believe councillors have been underpaid for far too long. My personal observations show that Fremantle councillors work very long hours for our community and the remuneration they receive is not anywhere near adequate.
Elected Members make decisions about the future of our councils, and we should try to attract the best possible people to stand at local council elections, to make sure we get visionary people who have a big picture approach to city planning. We will only attract the best if we are willing to pay them good money for their time, that involves a lot of evening and weekend work.
I am slightly bewildered to read in the Fremantle Gazette that the Town of East Fremantle is allocating $ 30,000 to do a visioning project with consultant James Best. With the announcement by State Government on local council amalgamations imminent one has to wonder about the value of such a project for the East Fremantle community, even more so since the City of Fremantle already conducted their Visioning 2029 project last year.
It is anticipated that Fremantle and East Fremantle will merge with some parts of Melville and Cockburn, so any planning for the future should consider that and should be inclusive of the entire new local council. Why not wait until the Minister for Local Government announces the new boundaries and then do a visioning project for the new and much larger council? That would be far more cohesive and useful, I believe, as the outcomes of the workshops would embrace the entire new City of Fremantle.
The City of Fremantle will receive a report by James Best on the Visioning 2029 workshops, similar to the City Centre Masterplan done by the City of Auckland in 2012, that has a twenty-year vision for that city and sets the direction for the future of the city.
One of the concerns I have with the Fremantle Visioning 2029 project is that there was not a lot of participation by younger people and that needs to be addressed somehow. We should not plan the future of our city without knowing what the generations who will live here in 30 years from now want. I can’t recall to have been asked at any of the workshop what my age is, so there will be no record of the demographics of the Visioning 2029 participants. We need to learn to engage the younger people of Freo more in planning the future of our city.
I am very excited about Fremantle amalgamating and growing into a substantial city. I also hope that a larger Fremantle will receive more support from State Government, as I can’t recall any substantial State projects in Fremantle in the last 10 years. Freo deserves better than that. The State has an obligation to also support the metro region and councils outside Perth.
There is something quite interesting going on in the Perth area with Transport Minister Dean Nalder wanting to go back to the eighties and convince people that car pooling is the way to go to work, and that it will be faster because they can use the bus lanes. Is that a good idea or just a thought bubble? What about if all those who now drive to work alone, collect three colleagues? That would significantly reduce the number of cars on the road during peak hours, but allow them all to use the bus lanes though and congestion there will happen as well and slow down public transport.
Congestion is affecting people’s health, and according to TomTom rush our congestion in Perth is adding 31 minutes of commuting time each day to a trip, but at the same time the number of people using public transport is also falling significantly, probably because of overcrowding of trains. 41 percent of people surveyed by the Sunday Times though that our public transport is poor to very poor. That might just be perception, but perception creates its own reality.
All new city planning in places like Fremantle, for higher density living in public transport corridors, counts for little if people are reluctant to use public transport. It does not help either that the Public Transport Authority is now charging parking fees at train stations, that ticket prices are increasing, and that pensioners will lose their concessions.
What is needed are more trains, a better fast transit bus system, and people being more aware of the environment and the pollution peak hour traffic creates.
In a perfect world more people should be working from home. Modern IT technology often does not require people to assemble together in an office environment and work from 9-5 there, as they could connect via the internet. That however would need employers to think outside the box and show trust in their employees. Instead of using overseas call centres there could be home-based ones in WA.