Freo's View

THE GREATER FREMANTLE ACTION PLAN

 

chamber function

 

Future Freo chairman Adrian Fini launched the Greater Fremantle Action Plan by the Fremantle Chamber of Commerce in the Australia II gallery of the Maritime Museum on Thursday evening, in front of Minister Simone McGurk, Mayor Brad Pettitt and several councillors and CoF staff, as well as representatives from Notre Dame University, Fremantle Port, Silverleaf Investments and business leaders.

The 28-page Action Plan is well worth reading and I assume the Chamber will put it on line, as it is too substantial to address every item in it here on the blog.

FCOC chair Ivan Dzeba said that Fremantle is already a great place but it can be better, while Adrian Fini said that we do need change and will fall apart if we don’t move forward.

We need to ask ourselves what is Fremantle’s strength and cultural identity, and we have great opportunities which need great leadership, but growth in technology will take shoppers away, but Fremantle has unique offerings that other shopping precincts do not have.

There is a deep journey ahead that demand teamwork with council, businesses and the community working together, Fini said.

The Greater Fremantle Action Plan records Freo’s strengths as having:

  • Dynamic economy particularly in transport and related industries, the arts and receational services, accommodation, food and health care
  • A unique profile consisting of heritage strength and character
  • Fremantle Port remains Fremantle’s most important industry
  • Fremantle has a unique combination of the knowledge economy and creative industries
  • Health services and related sectors continue to play an important role despite the downsizing of Fremantle Hospital
  • Fremantle has a global reputation as a tourist destination

 

So what are the plans for action?

 

Create the Conditions

  • Business attraction plan
  • Destination marketing campaign
  • Develop financial incentives
  • Policy and regulation review
  • Complete structure plan
  • Develop infrastructure to support a cultural plan

Connecting People, Places & Markets

  • Planning for affordable housing
  • Improvements to urban realm in commercial areas
  • Improvements to public transport
  • Sophisticated city centre parking plan
  • Connected cycle path network
  • Improvements to regional connections
  • Improvements to visitor booths and wayfinding
  • Improvements to pedestrian access

Promoting our Place

  • Broader and more unified approach to marketing
  • Develop relevant Fremantle ‘apps’
  • Unique brand development
  • Expand toursim accommodation
  • Explore new tourism opportunities
  • Grow conference/events industry

 

Roel Loopers

 

 

FREO CITY STATEMENT ABOUT YELLOW ART REMOVAL

Posted in art, city of fremantle, fremantle festival, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on August 16, 2018

Here the media release by the City of Fremantle regarding the yellow art work removal in High Street:

Arc d’Ellipses removal goes to tender

A commitment to taking a ‘building by building’ approach to ensure safe and careful removal of the Arcs d’Ellipses artwork has prompted the City of Fremantle to undertake a formal tender process.

Internationally renowned artist Felice Varini used yellow-painted foil to create a striking optical illusion along High Street, Fremantle, as part of last year’s High Tide festival. After extending the artwork’s tenure on the back of its strong public acclaim, the City is currently working through the process to remove the foil.

Quotes were sought recently from a number of contractors but following review and evaluation the City has determined it will not accept any of these.

Instead, a more structured scope of works will be developed and a dedicated project manager assigned to work with building owners to create bespoke plans that consider the specific needs of each building.

Director Infrastructure and Projects Graham Tattersall said the City was committed to getting the artwork removed and buildings restored to their pre-installation condition in the most effective and sensitive way.

“Our priority is to ensure the foil comes off without impact on the buildings and so it’s important we are able to define and manage the most suitable and appropriate solution that considers each building’s individual characteristics,” he said.

“While the proposals we received in the initial request for quote were helpful in giving us a clearer picture of what is required, we were also concerned about the wide range of approaches, work methodologies and prices submitted – all of which were above the legislated threshold for councils to call for public tenders.

“On reflection, we felt the scope was probably too broad, and posed potential ambiguity and risks for contractors. We believe it’s best we take a ‘building by building’ approach that considers the varying conditions of the various facades, the different surfaces – and ensures the right solution for each situation.

“We appreciate the level of interest in the issue and our primary focus is to do this properly. We thank building owners for their understanding and patience and will work closely with them to ensure we get this right.”

Mr Tattersall said the City would ensure that building owners are kept briefed through the procurement and delivery process.

“We will continue to provide community updates as the project progresses,” he said

NEW FREO TENDER TO REMOVE YELLOW PAIN(T)

Posted in art, city of fremantle, fremantle festival, heritage, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on August 16, 2018

 

 

A Fremantle building owner in historic High Street informed me late last evening that he had received a letter from City of Fremantle Director Infrastructure and Project Delivery, and acting CEO Graham Tattersall to let him know that the City had not accepted any of the quotes for the removal and make good of the Felice Varini yellow artwork Arcs D’Ellipse and that it would now go to a public tender process.

This delay will most likely mean that the removal and repaint won’t all be completed this year as the City would not want cherrypickers in historic High Street and the loss of parking bays during the Christmas shopping period.

A senior officer told me on Thursday that the quotes had been “all over the place” and that some where open ended because the cleaning and painting companies just did not know how much work would be involved. The officer suggested that more testing, on different buildings, might be required. He was adamant that the City wanted to get it absolutely right and hence the responsibility for the process was moved away from the arts officers and Community Development Department, because it was not their expertise. That makes a lot of sense to me.

The High Street building owner suggested that the public tender was necessary because the City’s own policy demands a public tender process for work over $ 150,000, so he assumed all the quotes/estimates had come in over that amount.

I also got a call from the City’s media officer late afternoon yesterday who said the City would send out a media release sometime today, but I am elsewhere occupied so won’t be able to deal with that till late this afternoon. Stay tuned!

Roel Loopers

PEDESTRIAN PRIORITY AT FREMANTLE OVAL PROJECT

 

 

When Fremantle Council and the Fremantle Oval reference and steering groups are looking at the potential and opportunities for the development and activation of the area one of their main priorities must be the connectivity between the north and the south of Parry Street, as this is going to be a major challenge.

Pedestrian crossing is already a challenge on weekends when the Fremantle Markets are open. The roundabout at William Street is not the safest place to cross Parry Street since motorists are occupied with navigating the roundabout and rarely give way to pedestrians who are on their way to the oval or Fremantle Prison.

The entire precinct will attract a lot more people when Fremantle Oval is activated and when Silverleaf Investments have developed the police and justice complex down the road with a hotel and community spaces and activation, so vehicular and pedestrian movement will increase substantially.

When one also considers that the City of Fremantle has plans to extend Norfolk Street all the way to Mews Road in the Fishing Boat Harbour, which will make Parry Street even more into a ring road, one can start contemplating the challenges ahead to create safe pedestrian access between the markets and the oval.

Serious thoughts need to be had about a possible pedestrian underpass or at least a zebra crossing somewhere halfway along Parry Street between William Street and South Terrace.

There will be events and concerts at Fremantle Oval and residential and commercial accommodation in new buildings to the south and west of it, and the Kings Square activation project will bring heaps more people to that part of Freo, so a lot more people will be in the area, that already is home to two of Fremantle’s most popular tourist attractions Fremantle Prison and the Fremantle Markets.

If Fremantle Council is serious about making Parry Street even more into a ring road from Queen Victoria Street in the north east of the CBD all the way to the Fishing Boat Harbour, it will need to address especially pedestrian connectivity and safety between the new developments in the precinct as a priority.

Roel Loopers

BETTER COMMUNICATION NEEDED TO SETTLE THE YELLOW ANGST

Posted in art, city of fremantle, fremantle festival, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on August 14, 2018

art 1

 

Tenders for the removal of the Felice Varini yellow Arcs D’Ellipse artwork in High Street and repair to the heritage buildings closed last Friday, so we should soon be told by the City of Fremantle what will be involved, how much it will cost, and if some or all of the costs will be recovered from the artist.

There is a bit of angst and worry among some of the property owners, with one already talking to lawyers and another one has started a petition for a special electors meeting.

The best way forward for the City  is calling a stakeholders meeting where all the affected High Street building owners get first hand information from the responsible officers, as the present communication is not deemed sufficient.

There is little use in some receiving emails and others not, and that from different CoF officers. That only adds to the confusion and angst, so invite all the property owners to a meeting with CoF officers and experts, so they can be told exactly what is going on and what is planned.

We already hear suggestions of expensive traffic management, loss of parking bays and even road closure, as matching the paint can’t be done at night, so that will have to be done during the day.

From my own observations of seeing cleaning and painting companies trying to remove the foil it looks like it will be a long and slow and careful process that might not even be completed before the end of the year.

I hear six companies looked at the problems and they all tendered, so I hope they added a clause in their tender that fully painting of some facades is not included in the cost, as that will be very expensive.

On a related note I’d like to welcome Destry Puia who has taken over from the very well liked Pete Stone as the Manager Arts and Culture. He has been thrown in the deep end as the artwork removal is now one of his responsibilities to manage.

I hear Destry is a proud Maori man who relocated with his young family from Melbourne, so welcome to Freo, Destry. I am looking forward to meeting you. If I can assist you with anything in settling down here, just send me an email!

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE OVAL PRECINCT A GREAT OPPORTUNITY

 

Integrated into the heart of Fremantle, the vision for the Fremantle Oval Precinct is to re-establish and offer an active venue for sport, community, cultural and health pursuits.

Work on creating a concept for Fremantle Oval and the surrounding areas is underway with the City of Fremantle having established a Steering Group and a Reference Group.

The Steering Group consists of three directors of the City, the CEO of the South Metro Health Service and the Manager City Design and Projects of CoF.

The Reference Group is very large with three Elected Members,  the Area Manager Infrastructure of South Metro Health, a representative from the Department of Local Government, Sport and Culture, The CEOs of the South and East Fremantle football clubs, the President of the Fremantle District Cricket Club, the CEO of the Fremantle Chamber of Commerce, a representative of the University of Notre Dame, and three managers of the City of Fremantle. WOW, they must have veeeery looooong meetings so that everyone can have their say!

And what is it all about?

1. CONNECT WITH THE SURROUNDS

The precinct is re-established in a way that integrates its internal uses with one another as well as reconnecting the precinct into the fabric of the city centre.

2. CONSOLIDATES A CENTRE OF EXCELLENCE

Develop and enhance the precinct in a manner that consolidates and increases sporting activities on the Oval as the primary use and as a Centre of Excellence for football, while respecting the heritage of the precinct.

3. BRINGS ADDED PUBLIC LIFE

Augment sporting uses at the venue with entertainment, cultural events and community activities that bring added public access and life to the precinct.

4. ENABLES REGENERATION AND INTEGRATION

Consolidate health activities on the hospital site; enabling regeneration and improved integration with the surrounding city.

5. IMPROVES PUBLIC ACCESS

Develop key perimeter sites that improve public accessibility and increase pedestrian activity at ground level, throughout the year.

6. BALANCES TRANSPORT ACCESS

Enable a balanced portfolio of transport access arrangements to the precinct.

and there is more:

PUBLIC OPEN SPACE

Provide Open, Green Space for a Healthy City

Ensure the precinct provides open and green spaces for access by city workers, residents and visitors.

Reveal and Visually Connect the Precinct

Key views, vistas and links are established, protected and celebrated.

BUILT FORM

Optimise Activity through Appropriately Scaled Development

Ensure development opportunities optimise activities / density through appropriate height, mass and setbacks.

Respond to the Environment

Seek excellence in design and aesthetics; develop in a fashion that is responsive to local environmental conditions and sustainability principles.

SOCIAL AND CULTURAL

Integrate into Fremantle’s Historic Urban Fabric

Where practical, extend the urban grid of the city into the precinct to improve legibility and urban integration, whilst acknowledging the historical informal and open nature of the precinct.

Celebrate Heritage and History

Understand, reveal, enhance and interpret the unique heritage attributes of the precinct and its context.

MOVEMENT AND TRANSPORT

Invite People In

Improve pedestrian access, permeability and sense of safety across the precinct and along adjoining streets.

Create Good Journeys

Enhance physical connections between the precinct, prison and town.

What appears to be missing are some creative people; architects, artists, placemakers, and also yet again no attempt to involve community groups from the beginning, so yet again they will have to be reactive and that often results in the groups being criticised for being negative.

When will they ever learn at local government that it is advantageous to involve members of the community from the very start because it means a lot less hassles when it comes to planning issues, etc.

The Fremantle Oval Precinct is a huge opportunity for the City of Fremantle and while they mention a time frame of 20-30 years for the development this one is more realistic and achievable than the South Quay development ideas.

Roel Loopers

FRIENDS OF ROYAL GEORGE AGAINST HIGHRISE

 

 

The news that The Friends of Royal George community group has been established in East Fremantle makes sense as it is always important for state government agencies to be aware of the feelings in the community, even when East Fremantle Council’s Royal George scheme amendment only allows for six storey buildings in the area.

Saracen Properties wants to build a slim 15 storey tower on top of a four storey podium, but it is unlikely JDAP or SAT would approve that under the present local scheme.

People point out that a state agency approved 16 storeys on the former Subiaco market site, but that is very different from the East Freo proposal. The Subi site is only metres away from the train station and bus transport and that does not apply to the East Fremantle location that is miles away from the Fremantle railway station and not that close to other forms of public transport either.

While I personally quite like the elegant tall spike designed by Michael Patroni’s spaceagency and do believe a landmark highrise would be appropriate in that location, I also believe that the 19 storey proposal does not adequately address the urban infill requirements of the state government.

When we impose very high buildings on a low rise community the main purpose of the development should be to create many new homes for many people, and not as is the case at the Royal George a mere 40 apartments for a few selected well off on 15 floors.

I am not sure if Saracen Properties will present their proposal to JDAP or come up with a much lower building. The architects told me some weeks ago that they are still looking at it on the computer.

Roel Loopers

 

FOR SALE AFTER RECENT PLANNING APPROVAL

Posted in architecture, city of fremantle, development, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on August 10, 2018

 

Interesting to see that the property on the corner of Wray Avenue and Hampton Road, that received planning approval only a few weeks ago, is now on the market. I believe it is a flaw in the planning laws that this is allowed to happen.

Roel Loopers

P.S. Bad news for regular Freo’s View readers. My mobility will be severely hampered over the next two weeks as I have to wear a leg/knee brace, so I won’t be able to be as prolific with publishing blog posts as you are used to.

FREE ELECTRIC CAR CHARGING AT CAPPUCCINO STRIP CARPARK

Posted in cars, city of fremantle, electricity, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on August 7, 2018

 

The new electric car free charging points at Fremantle’s Cappuccino Strip car park are now live.

The four 22 kilowatt charging points are compatible with most electric vehicles, with a one hour charge giving between 18-40 kilometres of driving distance depending on the car.

There are also two standard 240 volt charging points, which means all current electric cars can be charged up using the appropriate cables.

The chair of the WA branch of the Australian Electric Vehicles Association Richard Baird said the new charging points would be greatly appreciated by the owners of electric cars.

“Fremantle has always supported electric vehicles and it’s fantastic that they’ve allocated four electric vehicle charging bays for the Cappuccino Strip and all EVs are welcome,” Mr Baird said.

“Around Perth there are probably about 50 or 60 of these charging points but that’s growing all the time, and as more electric vehicles are sold onto the market we’ll see more charging stations go in.

“Most people charge at home overnight but when you’re out and about doing errands these charging points are fantastic.”

While the drivers of electric cars will still have to pay for parking, charging their cars will be free.

The charging stations are just one of the environmentally friendly features of the new Cappuccino Strip car park, which was built using recycled road materials and also features solar lighting, storm water capture and water-wise native plants.

FREMANTLE’S YELLOW BLUES-CONTINUED

Posted in art, city of fremantle, fremantle festival, heritage, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on August 7, 2018

 

 

The trial attempts to safely remove the yellow foil from heritage buildings in Fremantle’s High Street by all different kind of cleaning and painting companies continued this week, but have not been enormously successful, as these photos show.

On Monday another wall cleaning company tried out hot steam, and that worked partially on certain surfaces, but not on others.

It is interesting to note in this context that High Tide Biennale curator Tom Mueller of PS Art Space has gone into hiding and does not want to know about the problems.

The biennale Mueller created was fantastic and he deserves a lot of credit for it, as he does for making PSAS into a great arts and events space, but mature people take ownership of their successes and failures, so not responding to an email I sent him last Wednesday and crossing the street on Monday afternoon so that he would not have to engage with me and two High Street property owners affected by the Varini artwork removal debacle is unprofessional and silly.

Tom Mueller was very keen to seek my support before the High Tide Biennale, and he was happy to front the media for the Arcs D’Ellipse launch with Minister David Templeman, Freo Mayor Brad Pettitt and fellow Swiss artist Felice Varini, but now he’s gone all silent.

Also missing in action is the Fremantle Herald. While all the main media have reported on the problems of removing the artwork and the damage to the historic buildings, our own local community paper has not published a word about it. Worried about losing advertising revenue from the City of Fremantle, and not caring one bit about what it will cost ratepayers to repair the artwork damage, very tired old Chook?

One thing is for sure, that the removal is going to be problematic and very costly. Traffic management will be required, as might heritage expert advise, cherry pickers will be needed and maybe even road closure of High Street.

What is certain is that building owners will not accept just a patch up job, but will insist on perfection and reinstating what was there before the yellow foil was put up.

Whoever the ‘lucky’ tender winner will be, I wish them good luck. I don’t envy them for the job ahead.

Roel Loopers

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