Freo's View


Posted in Uncategorized, art, architecture, local government, city of fremantle, fremantle festival by freoview on January 22, 2019



The integrity of the West Australian newspaper is on the line with yet again another claim of exclusivity when in fact the article reports absolutely nothing new.

It has been well known in Fremantle for months that former Mayor Peter Tagliaferri has taken a writ out against the City of Fremantle and wants $ 50,000 to repair and repaint the facade of his building on the corner of High and Cliff streets for the removal of the yellow foil of the Felice Varini artwork.

But that has not stopped the only daily newspaper in Perth from claiming today that the article is exclusive. Bull….!

In the meantime painters are working hard to remedy the damage and the first three buildings they have almost done look pretty good to a layman like me.

Roel Loopers



Posted in architecture, city of fremantle, heritage, historic, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on January 21, 2019



I had a walk around the old town this morning and decided to take photos of some of the gorgeous facades of heritage buildings.

It is what makes Fremantle such a very special and beautiful place to live in and visit.

Roel Loopers








Now that the fences have come down around the paving trial at Kings Square I went to have another look at what is considered for the new paving of our city square once the new Civic Centre has been built.

It is going to be hard for Councillors and the public to imagine what any of the suggestions will look like on a much larger scale, so that is going to be a challenge. Once some options have been shortlisted it would be good to get some renders done on what the entire square would look like.

My impression is that some much larger and square paving options have not been included and that many of the suggestions have far too small individual pavers for such a large area, and most of the suggestions are rectangular. It is rather disappointing and uninspiring what is on offer.

For me personally not one suggestion stands out that I think would be great, so maybe other options need to be considered by the officers and more homework to be done on the internet to see what other council have come up with in major city square. It might be a good idea to also ask the Civic Centre architects to make suggestions about the paving.

Roel Loopers





Since I published the article about the Kings Square new Civic Centre yesterday I had some comments saying they like the open space where the Civic Centre is going to be built, and the Fremantle Society is demanding the building should be constructed somewhere else and not at our City square.

Let’s have a pragmatic and realistic look at that.

The City of Fremantle does very likely have contractual obligations with Sirona Capital and the architects, so that would create a major headache.

What would we do with the empty square? Fountains, trees, shade structures, seating, drink water fountains, more CCTV, etc. would cost a lot of money.

A new Civic Centre has to be built and that will cost close to what the one at Kings Square is going to cost. Where would we build it? The City’s properties which are for sale in Quarry Street could probably handle a 2-3 storey Civic Centre, but parking for visitors would be a major headache.

Building the Civic Centre at the also for sale Works Depot site at Knutsford Street would get rid of the parking issues, but is it a good location for a Civic Centre?

And let us not forget that one of the main reasons for the Kings Square Redevelopment Project is activation of the CBD, so would we really want to pull out the around 400 Council workers and the many hundreds of people who go to the library or visit the administration building each week. That seems counter productive to me.

I am well aware of all the grandiose town squares in Europe, but Kings Square has not and will not be like that, because Fremantle does have its own unique character, on which we can build on and modernise, and progress for the future.

It is my understanding that even after the new Civic Centre has been built Kings Square still has more square metres of public open space than Forrest Place in Perth. Correct me if I am wrong.

Roel Loopers







One has to wonder what is going on at the Fremantle Society when one reads today’s tabloid-style advertisement in the Fremantle Herald.

SOS-Save Our Square it yells, insinuating that if the new Civic Centre is built by the City of Fremantle Kings Square will be lost, which is utter nonsense.

Kings Square has been two triangles, separated by the High Street road reserve, for decades, so what is all the Fremantle Society grand-standing about?

The northern triangle is the property of the St John’s church and the southern triangle belongs to the City. That will remain so.

Do the members of FS really expect that Fremantle Council will change the decision they made years ago, when they agreed on the Kings Square Redevelopment Project with Sirona Capital? Surely FS knows the horse has bolted and the start of the construction of the new Civic Centre is only a month or two away.

The Society calls for the square to be reinstated, so they want that big empty space that was created by the demolition of the former Civic Centre just to remain that? And they are happy for the City to have wasted many thousands of dollars on architects and consultants, which would have to start all over again if we were to build a civic centre elsewhere in Fremantle?

How on the ball about Fremantle issues is the Frematle Society when one of their committee members lives in Nannup, another one travels the world, and its president also spent at least a third of last year overseas? Not much up to date local knowledge at FS committee meetings one might suggest.

The Kings Square Redevelopment Project is good for Fremantle, and so are the many other developments in our city. It is time for the Fremantle Society to start accepting that the world changes constantly and Freo will do the same. That is a good thing!

Roel Loopers




The fences finally came down along the Brush Factory development on the corner of Duke and George streets in East Fremantle, so I went to have another look at it this morning.

I know that beauty is difficult to quantify because it has different meanings for all of us, but I do find the modern top-level addition on the old building quite intriguing, while some other parts are just not my cup of tea.

I do not like the darkness the dark bricks create along Duke Street, where apartment buildings have been added, and I find that the northern side of development, which faces the old Royal George hotel, has very strange and awkward angles, almost as if much of it was an after-thought that was added to it.

But the epic development of the former Lauder&Howard antiques building has finally been completed and incorporates the Duke of George jazz and blues bar, so it is in part a good addition for the area.

In the meantime graffiti vandals have started to deface the Royal George again and it is still not known if Saracen Properties will go ahead with the development there after all, when they are only allowed to have a seven-storey building behind the former hotel.

Roel Loopers


Posted in architecture, art, city of fremantle, colour, photography, Uncategorized by freoview on January 11, 2019


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freo 2


It is not easy when you are getting close to your death bed at the ripe old smelly age of seventy to commit yourself to exercise and getting the body just that little bit more fit, but that is just what I did this morning when I walked from Beacy to the Freo CBD and back.

It will probably take me a week to recover from this madness and that is probably why my nickname is Loopy. ; >).

I took these two photos of the colours of Freo while I wandered around and also the one in the blog post above this one about the paving trial at Kings Square.

Roel Loopers


Posted in architecture, art, city of fremantle, fremantle festival, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on January 10, 2019


yellow art


This photo of the former St Andrew’s Mariners Chapel in Fremantle’s historic High Street, taken late yesterday afternoon, clearly shows the challenges the contractors face in removing the yellow foil of the Felice Varini Arcs D’Ellipse artwork from the buildings.

The building to the west if it escaped major damage as they could pull off the foil, but this one looks pretty awful, so it appears that it will need a lot more work before it can be re-painted.

It is quite clear that all the buildings will need individual treatment, as the City of Fremantle has indicated, so I don’t envy those who have to find solutions for the problems they encounter. Good luck!

Roel Loopers



Posted in architecture, buildings, city of fremantle, development, heritage, Uncategorized by freoview on December 20, 2018


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we 2


It is rather unusual to see a big building crane going up in Fremantle’s historic West End, but this one was put together all day in Henry Street for the construction of the four-storey residential building on the former Fremantle Workers Club site.

Roel Loopers




civic centre


The demolition of the City of Fremantle’s old administration building in Kings Square is now complete, as the photo above shows, with 95 per cent of the building’s materials recovered for recycling.

A total of 6443 tonnes of material was removed from the site, including 5841 tonnes of bricks and concrete, 294 tonnes of steel and 83 tonnes of general waste.

The bricks and concrete from the old building will be crushed and recycled as road base or drainage materials, while the steel will be recycled and used in the manufacture of new steel products.

The demolition of the old administration building was carried out by experienced demolition contractor Delta Pty Ltd.

While the bulk of the project was carried out using heavy machinery, sections of the building connected to the historic Fremantle Town Hall were taken down by hand.

Scaffolding was erected to protect the Town Hall during demolition and noise, dust and vibration monitoring was conducted throughout the demolition process.

The project also included the removal of 224 tonnes of asbestos. Strict environmental management controls, including airborne control sampling, were in place during the asbestos removal.

The new building, designed by the world-renowned Kerry Hill Architects, is a key component of the broader $270 million Kings Square Renewal project – a joint initiative between the City and Sirona Capital.

Last month Pindan Constructions was selected as the City’s preferred contractor for the project, with the awarding of the contract now subject to final negotiations.

If those negotiations are successfully concluded construction is expected to start early next year.

Roel Loopers


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