Calls by Cottesloe Councillors to ban rooftop gardens because of the noise from parties held there raise an interesting question about how much inner city residents should have to put up with. Some say if you want to live in a vibrant inner city you’ll have to live with the noise of parties, pubs, music venues, cars, drunks, etc. and if you don’t like it move to the suburbs, but is that fair?
Even people living in a bustling inner city do have the right to privacy and the comfort of their own home, and the argument that one can’t expect to have quiet days and nights because of an inner city location are inconsiderate, especially since real estate in a central location like Fremantle costs a lot more that in the outer suburbs.
With our climate and our lifestyle we are blessed to be able to entertain outdoors for eight months a year and that requires consideration for our neighbours who might not party as often. Is live music acceptable at an inner city party for example, or why should Marine Parade residents accept that the City of Fremantle has made the Esplanade Reserve park into a showground, when the Town of Claremont no longer allows live concerts at their showground?
There is a fine line between freedom and making a nuisance of oneself. The lack of care and consideration for others is often the core problem. If everyone in our street had two loud and late parties over the warmer months we would not have a quiet weekend ever where we can just sit outdoors and have a nice chat and a barbeque, because the noise from others would intrude and take away our privacy and preferred way of living and entertaining.
One Cottesloe Councillor said the noise from roof garden parties descents on the suburb like a cloud from which no one can escape. I recall similar complaints were made when Many 6160 had a rooftop bar and live music.
There is a difference when people buy property and move in near a source of noise, be that a train line, busy road or pub. When they do that they should be aware that they will get noise, but others who have bought in a relatively quiet location should not suddenly have to put up with extreme noise. The planned live music venue at J Shed for example will seriously affect the lifestyle and quiet comfort of those who years ago bought properties in the west end of Fremantle. Is that fair to them and should they have to accept that because the common good is more important than their privacy? Would you accept it if it happened near you?
Rooftop gardens are the new design features of many multi-storey apartment buildings and that requires that Councils have laws in place to deal with the noise that might escape from them and affect neighbours close and far away. The Fremantle inner city is already going through a change with apartment buildings in progress and others planned, so we’d better get ready and deal with the coming changes and challenges related to it.