Freo's View

FREMANTLE BRIDGE DESIGN A GREAT OPPORTUNITY

Posted in city of fremantle, city planning, freight, traffic, trains, Uncategorized by freoview on July 3, 2020

 

 

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The Fremantle community and Council are rallying state government to ensure we will have significant input in what the new traffic bridge will look like, its location and that the old traffic bridge, or a part of it, will be saved for community and tourist use.

North Fremantle resident Rebecca Clarkson has been very active and had meetings with Simone McGurk and Josh Wilson and many other people. She is trying to connect the entire Freo community, especially those impacted by the bridge.

Rebecca organised an online petition that has received many hundreds of signatures already, and she has been assured that community consultation by Main Roads will start this month, so stay tuned for updates on that.

Imagine the possibility of a high span bridge where tourists could climb over and  a flying fox down to the foreshore.

I walked over to the old traffic bridge yesterday morning and took these photos.

Roel Loopers

FREO COMMUNITY DEMANDS AMAZING NEW BRIDGE!

Posted in city of fremantle, development, freight, local government, state government, traffic by freoview on June 27, 2020

There is an on-line petition to convince the State Government that the Fremantle community should have significant input on the planned new traffic bridge.

There is huge concern that Main Roads will use the crash and burn tactic to ignore what we in Fremantle want and present us with a done deal, which they will call community consultation, when they have already made up their mind. That is not on!

Please click on the link and sign the petition to Minister Rita Saffioti.

https://www.change.org/p/minister-rita-saffioti-fight-for-the-fremantle-traffic-bridge-ensuring-the-best-outcome-for-the-people-and-place/nftexp/fht-23106212-en-au/0/22853888?recruiter=22853888&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=facebook&utm_campaign=psf_combo_share_initial&recruited_by_id=6d15ba30-c4d1-012f-6bfa-4040ea65fa16&utm_content=fht-23106212-en-au%3A0

Roel Loopers

 

 

FREMANTLE COMMUNITY WANTS NEW BRIDGE INVOLVEMENT

 

A late item about the new Fremantle traffic bridge was added to last night’s Fremantle Council meeting agenda, at the initiative of Mayor Brad Pettitt. This is very important because Freo Council and the community need to be proactive on this, to make sure that we not only get an outstanding new bridge of great creative design, but also that the old heritage-listed bridge will be preserved for the community.

The community wants a significant say in this and at the very early stages of planning, because we don’t want this project delayed by being presented with plans that are finalised and not negotiable. The bridge will be a new entry statement into Fremantle and hence needs to be attractive, maybe even one tourists can climb on to and get ggreat views of Fremantle Port and the Swan River, like the Sydney Harbour Bridge

  1. Welcomes the Federal and State funding commitment of $230m for the Swan River Crossing project, a project that will see major infrastructure delivered that will have an asset life in excess of 100 years;
  2. Adopts the following principles to assist with the City’s analysis and feedback to Government as the project unfolds and develops:
    1. PLANNING–That the StateGovernment provides clarity around how this project supports the long-term strategic planning scenarios for the region and how transport planning is fully integrated within this, and specifically how options will address:
      • the recommendations of the Westport Taskforce in relation to the future of the Inner Harbour of Fremantle Port;
      • land use, traffic, freight and passenger rail planning options for the areas on the north and south of the proposed new crossing;
    2. ALIGNMENT & CONNECTIONS – That the new bridge alignment(s) are optimised in terms of:• long-term planning scenarios;
      • uninterrupted flow / connectivity of the state’s Principle SharedPath (PSP) to Fremantle and North Fremantle Rail Stations. • low-speed cycling and pedestrian connectivity and amenity; • cultural heritage and place-making, in particular, impact onFremantle Traffic Bridge.
    3. DESIGN–That the Swan River Crossing demonstrates excellence in design – delivering infrastructure through a multi-discipline design process that celebrates contemporary bridge design and creates a memorable gateway experience and a place for people.
    4. HERITAGE – That a significant portion of the Fremantle Traffic Bridge is preserved at both ends – especially on the southern end – and adapted in a manner that:• retains pedestrian and cycling functions on its top deck;
      • retains a section over Beach Street, including its abutment andarchitectural embellishments;
      • is activated, connected and generates a destination for peopleon the foreshore;
      • remains an asset of the State Government.

5. CULTURE–That the Aboriginal significance of this rivercrossing/ location is clearly understood, respected and interpreted in the design and deliverables. This could be a major component of the % for Art program associated with this project.

  1. PUBLIC REALM & PLACE – That all public realm either created or modified by this project is safe, attractive, connected and inviting – with the potential to be extended and further connected with future riverside enhancements and developments – specifically, that increased curtilage is created in front of the Naval Stores building on Canning Highway to assist with activating this building and connection to foreshore.
  1. Requests that MRWA commence community engagement as soon as possible, and that this engagement process includes a full and transparent evaluation of design options and bridge alignments that respond to the principles noted above;
  2. Determines a final position on the various aspects of the Swan River Crossing in light of the comments and results that arise during the community engagement process.

Roel Loopers

MAYORS WANT CLEANER FREMANTLE PORT FREIGHT

 

The mayors of Fremantle, Melville and East Fremantle have put their collective support behind cleaner freight initiatives that will enable more efficient use of the road network by capping freight volumes and placing stricter controls on the types of trucks allowed to transport freight.

The mayors are calling for:

  • A new Fremantle Port accreditation system that will bring in cleaner and quieter trucks and over time ban older dirtier trucks.

  • State government incentives for clean, quieter trucks and ultimately a zero emissions truck fleet based on hydrogen and electric vehicles.

  • Government to work with industry to incentivise these quieter trucks to run outside of business and especially peak hours.

The intent is to reduce the effects of noise and diesel pollution on local residents by ensuring only cleaner and quieter trucks can access the port.

The three mayors said they would ideally like to see a working group comprising Fremantle Ports, Main Roads, the Freight Logistics Council, Western Roads Federation, Transport Workers Union, and local councils form a working party that can make recommendations to State Government on the best approach.

A key focus would be encouraging freight operators to upgrade to cleaner, more modern trucks included Euro 6 trucks and ultimately electric and hydrogen vehicles.

Possible options to achieve cleaner freight outcomes include:

  • Requirements for all trucks to have emissions control technology, such as exhaust gas recirculation.

  • Limiting truck movements during peak commute times and smoother freight runs encouraged through green light coordination on Leach Highway.

  • Roadworks to remediate areas of high risk and noise, such as the pending upgrade of the intersection of High Street and Stirling Highway with potential for other improvements along other sections of Stirling and Leach Hwy.

  • Increasing day time rail freight via a dedicated line on the pending new Fremantle Traffic Bridge and exploration of coastal shipping – the ‘blue highway’ – are other options.

 

Roel Loopers

 

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DON’T DEMOLISH FREMANTLE TRAFFIC BRIDGE!

 

The building of a new Fremantle traffic bridge is likely to be brought forward, in the State Government’s attempt to create jobs by fast forwarding major public works. A new bridge is badly needed, so I welcome the news, however the Fremantle community and Council should have a say in this matter, because we do not want just any ugly modern functional bridge, but something iconic and very Freo.

We also do not want the demolition of the present bridge because it is part of Freo’s heritage. It should be preserved and used, maybe as a dedicated bridge for pedestrians and cyclists, a viewing platform where we can hold events and markets, and make it a tourist destination.

The destruction of the North Fremantle town centre would be absolutely unacceptable, so one very important question is where will the bridge end in North Freo?

I sometimes disagree with the opinion of the Fremantle Society, but I absolutely agree with what Agnieshka Kiera, who was the City of Fremantle’s heritage architect for 25 years, wrote about preserving the old bridge, so I partly copy her well argued opinion piece.

We want extensive community consultation, and not just Main Roads creating a bridge that can accommodate a lot of vehicles fast!

Here is what Agnieshka Kiera wrote:

  • the historic Fremantle bridge has to stay. Not only for the reason of its heritage significance and, being listed on State Heritage, planning and compliance reasons. It should also stay for its greater importance to the city as the strategic urban feature and gateway to Fremantle, as follows:
    • since its construction the bridge has provided the vital pedestrian (and traffic) connection, not only between Fremantle and Perth but equally importantly between Fremantle and North Fremantle historic town centre; 
    • while the main vehicular traffic connection to Perth has been taken over by the Stirling Bridge, the much-reduced traffic using the historic bridge has helped to keep the North Fremantle’s historic centre accessible and to date a viable local hub of commercial and social activity;
    • the bridge acts as an important entry point and gateway to Fremantle: on the approach to Fremantle by the bridge, the closed vista of Cantonment Hill and the Signal Station, the Fremantle Port to the right and Swan River to the left, all the iconic urban features and Fremantle icons, create an exceptional landscape setting, reinforcing the city’s identity as the historic landmark of Western Australia;
    • the proposed bridge could potentially relieve the historic bridge of the vehicular traffic altogether and let it act as the vital pedestrian/cyclist link with Fremantle proper. There are numerous very successful examples around the world of saving the historic bridges from demolition. And while building new bridges to take on the modern essential role of carrying the vehicular traffic, many cities conserved the old bridges utilising them for the ancillary (mainly pedestrian) purposes. The most famous examples include the Burt Bridge in San Francisco, the Brooklyn Bridge on New York’s East River, Ponte Vecchio in Florence, Pot du Gard in France, Chenguyang Inmud and Rain Bridge in China etc. Each of them was replaced by a new bridge while being preserved for new functions. The same could be done in Fremantle, as freeing the Fremantle Bridge from vehicular traffic would facilitate its proper restoration as the pedestrian/cyclist bridge;
    • However, the plan in Brad Pettit’s blog doesn’t show where the new bridge’s roadway goes. Would it go through the North Fremantle old centre? It looks very likely. Would this result in some massive demolitions of the heritage buildings on its way? That would be the death not only to the old bridge but to the North Fremantle historic centre as well. The Fremantle bridge’s traditional role as a gateway and the significant connection between North Fremantle and Fremantle proper via Queen Victoria Street would be destroyed. That is a devastating prospect and should be stopped.

 

Roel Loopers

HIGH STREET UPGRADE PROJECT UPDATE

Posted in city of fremantle, city planning, freight, fremantle ports, traffic, Uncategorized by freoview on May 23, 2020

 

 

I walked over to have a look at the progress of the High Street Upgrade project in the east of Fremantle yesterday. There is a lot of work going on there currently.

A large area of land has been cleared north of High Street with several houses removed, and also on the eastern side of Stirling Highway.

FERN is gone and so are the derelict houses south of High Street and many trees have been removed along the golf course. A long retaining wall will have to be built from Carrington Street to accommodate the new road.

The project is meant to make life easier for truck drivers who deliver freight to Fremantle Port, with a large raised roundabout allowing them to take the turn from High Street onto Stirling Highway faster and safer.

Roel Loopers

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FREMANTLE HIGH STREET UPGRADE PROJECT

Posted in city of fremantle, freight, traffic, Uncategorized by freoview on April 26, 2020

 

High Street Upgrade

 

Here a photo of the High Street Upgrade project that is now well under way. Some of the Tuart trees have been removed but most of them will stay and become part of the new median strip, and Mainroads will also be planting hundreds of new trees in Booyeembara Park and around Fremantle to compensate for the loss of trees.

There is a bit of a bottleneck when one turns right onto Stirling Highway, so be aware that traffic might be a bit slow there at times.

Roel Loopers

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HIGH STREET UPGRADE PROJECT UPDATE

 

The High Street Upgrade project is well under way at the Stirling Highway intersection, where a large roundabout will be constructed to allow safer and faster freight truck transport to Fremantle Port. Below an update about the progress of the work from the WA Mainroads department:

Works underway Works to realign Stirling Highway southbound are nearing completion. Temporarily re-aligning southbound traffic to the east will enable the construction of the new Forrest Street underpass to commence.

Earthworks and clearing in the southern verge of High Street adjacent to the Fremantle Public Golf Course and Royal Fremantle Golf Club is progressing in stages.

Service locating is continuing to prepare for the relocation of utility assets including Western Power, Water Corporation and communications assets in the coming months.

Stirling Highway realignment

After the Easter long weekend the final stages of constructing the temporary lanes, including asphalt will be completed. Traffic will be switched onto the temporary alignment overnight towards the end of next week. Further information regarding traffic changes is overleaf.

Forrest Street underpass

Once traffic is switched to the temporary Stirling Highway southbound lanes, construction of the first third of the Forrest Street underpass will commence.

This will involve sheet piling in the centre of the underpass, then excavating to the west towards Wood Street.

Pedestrian detours are already in place to divert pedestrians and cyclists via Marmion Street while the underpass is under construction.

Wood Street north clearing

Clearing works in the verge between Stirling Highway and Wood Street (North) from Forrest Street to High Street will commence after Easter. This will enable underpass ramps and retaining walls works to commence. Noise wall footing work will also commence in May, while noise wall concrete design and procurement continues.

Traffic management will be in place on Wood Street during clearing and the street will be narrowed in areas immediately adjacent to clearing activities.

South of the Stirling Highway and High Street intersection

Earthworks and clearing is expected to commence later in April as we prepare to commence construction of the southern portion of the Stirling Highway and High Street roundabout

High Street southern verge

Earthworks will continue in the southern verge adjacent to the golf courses to construct the new westbound High Street lanes.

High Street east

Clearing in the southern verge of High Street between the Royal Fremantle Golf Club and Carrington Street is scheduled to commence after Easter. In areas where trees overhang the road, some after-hours clearing will be required.

Roadworks to remove medians along High Street between Carrington Street and Frank Gibson Park will also commence after Easter so traffic can be shifted north, and lane widths reduced to enable construction of the new westbound carriageway.

Traffic changes

Stirling Highway

When the temporary re-alignment of Stirling Highway southbound is complete, traffic will be switched to this temporary deviation after Easter to enable construction of the Forrest Street underpass.

High Street

To construct the new westbound carriageway, High Street lanes near Carrington Street will be re-aligned and reduced in width. From late March, traffic will no longer be permitted to turn right into or from High Street at Wilkinson Street, Chudleigh Street and Onslow Street.

Details regarding the traffic switch will be provided via https://project.mainroads.wa.gov/home/ and emailed to those subscribed to the project.

Roel Loopers

 

 

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I LOVE THE WORKING FREMANTLE PORT

Posted in city of fremantle, containers, freight, fremantle ports, Uncategorized by freoview on March 30, 2020

 

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While waiting for the passengers’ transfer from the Vasco da Gama the huge container ship MSC Sindy, the deepest draft ship ever to visit, turned in Fremantle Port to depart, so of course I could not resist to take a few photos.

It took three tug boats to turn the vessel around.

Roel Loopers

 

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FREMANTLE HIGH STREET UPGRADE STARTS

Posted in city of fremantle, freight, fremantle port, state government, traffic, Uncategorized by freoview on January 22, 2020

 

High Street

 

A groundbreaking ceremony was held at the Fremantle HIGH STREET UPGRADE project this morning with Premier Mark McGowan, the Member for Fremantle, Minister Simone McGurk, Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt, and Mainroads officials, but no one though about inviting this Freo blogger, so all I can show is this latest plan.

There will no doubt be traffic disruptions when the work starts in a few weeks from now, so I will try to keep you up to date, but that will depend a lot on receiving the relevant information.

Roel Loopers

 

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