Freo's View

FREO STUFF MOVIES ARE MADE OFF

Posted in city of fremantle, development, kings square, Uncategorized by freoview on March 20, 2018

 

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The demolition of the former Fremantle Queensgate cinema building looks like a movie set with the facade along William Street now also tumbling down.

Exciting times for our little port city!

Roel Loopers

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BIG PROGRESS AT FREO’S KINGS SQUARE

 

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When it comes to the Fremantle Kings Square redevelopment project I am like a child waiting for my Christmas presents, so I wanted to see a bit more of what is happening and asked developer Sirona Capital for access to the site.

PROBUILD‘s Nick Croft showed me around on Wednesday afternoon, but unfortunately the photos I hoped to get, looking down into the big demolition site from the adjacent roofs, were not possible because of health&safety regulations. The hero shot from ground level was one taken prior to my visit by Nick on his mobile phone and I thank him for sharing it here on Freo’s View.

The roof of the former MYER building has now also come down, so that later on two new storeys can be added, and inside the building is stripped back to just its concrete skeleton.

The Queensgate building’s William Street facade is now also being pulled back and in about ten days the facade of the Myer building at Queen Street will come down.

I feel sorry for the traders who are negatively impacted by all this, but sometimes in life we need to acknowledge that the big picture has priority over individuals and individual businesses.

I just hope they can all hang in there and hopefully reap the benefits of a rejuvenated inner city in less than two years from now. Good luck to you all!!

Roel Loopers

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DEMOLITIOUS KINGS SQUARE

Posted in city of fremantle, development, kings square, Uncategorized by freoview on March 10, 2018

 

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Scaffolding at the Queensgate building along William Street will start coming down next week to allow for the demolition of the facade of the building.

After the Newman Court facade and large parts of the building are now demolished the facade at William Street will be pulled back next.

The Fremantle Kings Square project is well under way. It is exciting to watch the progress, with work also speeding up at the former Myer building.

Roel Loopers

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WHAT FREMANTLE CAN LEARN FROM YAGAN SQUARE

 

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I am always committed to making Freo a better place to live, visit and work, so I hopped on the train to Perth this morning to have a look at the new Yagan Square and to see if Fremantle can learn anything from it for the Kings Square development. The answer is yes.

While Yagan Square has some really nice features the overall impression for me was disappointing. There is quite a bit of pretentious look-at-me design and the large space is ostentatious instead of good placemaking.

The Metropolitan Redevelopment Authority-MRA clearly did not learn from the Elizabeth Quay mistakes because there is far too much heat-reflecting hard surface of concrete and pavement and not enough shade. There are also the now typical BYB seats-Burn Your Bum, which will heat up from the sun.

The Market Hall inside is just another food hall but this one is dark and claustrophobic, so nothing to write home about either.

While the Yagan statue artwork is stunning I was surprised to see no story telling about the great warrior and Whadjuk Noongar history. It might be somewhere, but I failed to notice it, which means it is not significant enough.

There are a lot of struggling Balga grass trees, but I did not get a cultural experience about our indigenous history. That saddens me as it is an opportunity lost.

My overall feelings were that the square looks as if it was only partly designed and the rest just filled with concrete and seats, so please City of Fremantle learn from that and make Kings Square a much more special and enjoyable experience!

Roel Loopers

PUBLIC REALM AT FREO’S NEW KINGS SQUARE

 

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As I reported earlier this week Fremantle Council  on Wednesday approved concept plans to upgrade public spaces in Freo’s historic Kings Square. Here some more details.

The key components of the $8 million upgrades which form part of the broader renewal of the Kings Square precinct include:

• more shaded areas, with a 5% increase in tree canopy
• over 2,300sqm of public gardens and grassed areas
• a new outdoor interactive children’s play space with artistic light and sound elements
• a designated church yard and urban garden area
• new paving and street furniture extending further out to the edges of the square
• a greater priority on pedestrians but with the retention of service vehicle access, universally accessible parking and vehicle drop-off zones
• flexible outdoor spaces for events
• wider footpaths to encourage alfresco dining
• historical interpretation including glass floor viewing windows to interpret the former church and other material found in recent archaeological excavations
• enhanced lighting and CCTV coverage.

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE KINGS SQUARE UPDATE

Posted in city of fremantle, development, kings square, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on March 2, 2018

 

 

The ugly fences all around Kings Square have been made a little bit less on the eye with artist’s impressions of the future buildings.

The demolition is going fast and the facade of the Queensgate building is crumbling down daily.

Roel Loopers

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NO GRASS TREES FOR FREO KINGS SQUARE

Posted in aboriginal, city of fremantle, kings square, trees, Uncategorized by freoview on March 1, 2018

 

Councillor Jon Strachan was unsuccessful with his motion at Fremantle Council last night to include in the Kings Square Public Realm Concept Design the planting of Balga and/or other native trees to acknowledge Whadjuk Noongar culture.

His fellow councillors believed the Kings Square plans are too far advanced to make significant changes and that grass trees would be more appropriate in other locations in the inner city.

Councillor David Hume suggested Balga trees could be planted when the new railway station forecourt will be designed, but since that project has been planned for some 15 years I believe it would be better if the City planted a circle of grass trees at Pioneer Park as an entry feature for those arriving by train, bus and boat.

 

Roel Loopers

NEWMAN COURT CLOSED FOR KINGS SQUARE PROJECT

Posted in buildings, city of fremantle, kings square, Uncategorized by freoview on February 28, 2018

 

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The Newman Court thoroughfare between Queen and William streets is now closed to allow for the demolition of the former  Queensgate building and part-facade only- demolition of the former Myer building. It was not deemed safe to keep the narrow passage way open.

For me personally it is disappointing that I have no longer access to take progress photos of the demolition work and later on of the construction of the new Kings Square Project buildings, because from Kings Square palm trees obscure the view and from William Street the plane trees.

Roel Loopers

FREO’S CHALLENGING TIME OF TRANSITION

Posted in city of fremantle, development, kings square, retail, Uncategorized by freoview on February 23, 2018

 

The City of Fremantle, Sirona Capital and Probuild held an information sessions for CBD traders about the Kings Square Project on the balcony of the Federal Hotel yesterday evening.

The big news was the closure of Newman Court for safety reasons because the two building sites-Civic Centre and Queensgate/Myer are expanding and getting too close together to allow safe pedestrian passage between them.

That’s commons sense, but it will no doubt affect the few traders left in the Fremantle Mall. New signage will be placed around Kings Square to try to encourage pedestrians to keep using Fremantle Mall as a thoroughfare.

There will also be new parking signs installed and the naming of carparks and that is important with the imminent closure of the Queensgate carpark and the opening of the new Stan Reilly carpark by the end of March.

Some traders were talking compensation for loss of trade, but not many came up with new ideas about what they themselves could do to attract business from the hundreds of construction and demolition workers and that is disappointing.

They really need to reach out in new, creative and different ways to potential customers and accept that for the next two years it won’t be business as usual.

This is an exciting, but challenging, time of transition for Fremantle that will soon see our city prosper again with so much development on the way and much more in the pipeline and soon to start.

Roel Loopers

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FREO KINGS SQUARE DEMOLITION STARTED

Posted in city of fremantle, development, kings square, retail, shopping, Uncategorized by freoview on February 19, 2018

 

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So good to see walls and roofs coming down on the Queensgate building at Fremantle’s Kings Square.

A huge crane in Henderson Street was lifting four portable offices  for PROBUILD onto the roof of the car park, while inside heavy machinery was demolishing the Queensgate building.

The long awaited new development by Sirona Capital will see the all new FOMO retail concept at Kings Square in less than two years.

Roel Loopers

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