Freo's View

FREO’S CREATIVE TRAFFIC CALMING

Posted in Uncategorized, local government, city of fremantle, bicycles, pedestrians, cars, traffic by freoview on November 20, 2018

 

traffic calming 1

traffic 2

 

The traffic calming along South Terrace in South Fremantle has become a bit more creative with the City of Fremantle painting red patterns on the road near the intersection with Lefroy Road.

It looks great CoF!

Roel Loopers

FINALLY ZEBRA CROSSINGS FOR MARINE TERRACE

Posted in city of fremantle, local government, pedestrians, traffic, Uncategorized by freoview on November 10, 2018

 

It is long overdue, and something that I have called for for many years, but we are finally getting pedestrian zebra crossings on Marine Terrace in Fremantle, which is a nightmare to cross, especially on weekends.

Main Roads have approved that the City of Fremantle make the raised plateaus at Essex and Collie streets into proper zebra crossings to make crossing the busy road from the CBD to the Fishing Boat Harbour and vv. much safer.

However a lighting audit has found that the lighting at the crossings is not up to Australian standards and needs to be improved at a total cost of $ 60,000 to the City.

The Finance, Policy and Legislation Committee will on Wednesday decide if Council will want to invest that money to get the safer crossings.

Roel Loopers

HAMPTON ROAD CROSSING STATUS QUO

Posted in children, city of fremantle, local government, pedestrians, traffic, Uncategorized by freoview on October 11, 2018

 

I can’t even remember how many Fremantle Council sessions, and community information sessions, and South Fremantle Precinct meetings, I have attended that discussed the dangers of crossing Hampton Road near the Scott Street intersection. I live there so I drive my car in and out of those streets and walk there every day, and shop at IGA and Peaches at the shopping centre between Lloyd  and Scott streets.

So it is fairly disappointing that after all this time and many, many months of talking the FPOL Committee of Fremantle Council decided they did not like the officer’s recommendation of Option One, but preferred the status quo of Option Two.

It means the Scott Street intersection will remain closed and the pedestrian crossing will not be moved 50 metres further south.

They all agreed that the bus lanes were the major problem and that the Main Roads department is basically the enemy of pedestrians, because all that department wants is fast vehicle movement. Now that’s something for the state government to get its teeth into!

The state’s $ 200,000 allocated for better pedestrian crossing, through the election promise by Simone McGurk MLA, could now be spent on re-designing the Lloyd Street/Hampton Road intersection and how to get in and out of the carpark at the shopping centre there, and also at Scott Street.

For me, as a local with extensive local knowledge, the fact is that having no right turn at Scott Street will only entice more motorists to drive too fast and unlawfully use the bus lanes to overtake other vehicles. I have witnessed on many occasions that cars drive in the bus lanes during peak hours all the way from Douro Road to South Street and vice versa.

The FPOL Committee voted 6-1 in favour of Option Two. Only Councillor Andrew Sullivan, who is one of our two South Ward Councillors, voted against it.

For the record. 147 public submissions were received. 65% of those preferred option 1 and only 15% of them the option 2 Councillors voted for last night. And 20% did not like either option.

Roel Loopers

MUCH ADO ABOUT A TINY FREO LANE

Posted in city of fremantle, city planning, community, local government, pedestrians, Uncategorized by freoview on October 10, 2018

 

WOW! OMG!!! The FPOL committee of Fremantle Council spent 65 minutes, including some public speakers, debating the closure of the tiny laneway between Kellow Place and Swanbourne Street, after the City of Fremantle had been directed by the WA Planning Commission to reverse the decision they made about two years ago on the closure of the pathway.

An alternative recommendation was put to the elected members that the City should approach the chair of the WAPC and get them to change their ruling. The reason for that recommendation is that the access way could be easily replicated with a footpath at Bolton Place. Yep, let’s close an existing path and build a new one instead. Really?

Two petitions by local residents were there, with 22 signatures to reopen the path and 13 for keeping it closed, but public speakers argued that the majority of Kellow Place residents supported the closure while many in Bolton Place wanted it open. Interesting to note that there was a sense of entitlement by those who appeared to believe the little lane is a Kellow Place issue for people who live in the street, and not one for the local community which uses the pathway.

Councillor Rachel Pemberton said there was not much crime in the area, which was a reason the lane was closed by Council in the first place, and that the WAPC ruling says that this is not the best urban outcome.

Councillor Andrew Sullivan disagreed and said that he was not convinced that the WAPC was a better judge than the local authority. He believed the initial design of the area was extremely flawed that there is a sound argument for the closure, and that the lane did not even have universal access.

The motion was carried 3-2 so now officers will approach the WAPC to see if they are willing to change their ruling and if the path can remain closed.

Roel Loopers

 

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BEACY PRIMARY KIDS GET SAFER CROSSING

Posted in children, city of fremantle, local government, pedestrians, traffic, Uncategorized by freoview on October 8, 2018

 

It has been a long road with many community consultations, but it looks as if the City of Fremantle will finally make a decision this Wednesday of moving the pedestrian crossing on Hampton Road near the Scott Street intersection 50 metres south to make it safer, especially for kids who attend the Beaconsfield Primary School.

An important decision will also be the re-opening of the Scott Street intersection, so that motorists coming from the south can turn right into Scott St and don’t have to do the dog leg via Jennings and Maxwell streets.

The State Government is paying for it through a $ 200,000 grant under the Local Projects, Local Jobs Program.

The item is before the Finance, Policy and Legislation Committee on Wednesday.

OFFICER’S RECOMMENDATION

Council approve Project 11664 to improve safety for pedestrians crossing Hampton Road near the Scott Street intersection, in accordance with Option 1 of the community consultation, as shown on concept plan – drawing number 005-CP-17-001-D, in Attachment 1 of this report, to:

1. Move the guarded school pedestrian crossing approximately 50 meters south of its current location and create a new guarded school pedestrian crossing, complete with median island refuge and also pedestrian crossing lights that will flash at peak, before and after school crossing times.

2. Remove the existing guarded school pedestrian crossing.

3. Move the existing northbound bus stop approximately 20m north of its existing location, to provide a safe distance from the guarded school pedestrian crossing.

4. Reinstate access for vehicles turning right into Scott Street through the removal of the trial median installed in March 2017.

5. Trial the use of a riley kerb system to deter vehicular lane changes on the approach to the guarded school pedestrian crossing as shown in Attachment 1.

Roel Loopers

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PLANNING FOR FREMANTLE’S FUTURE

 

The Ordinary Council meeting of the City of Fremantle had two interesting potential development items on the agenda, the first one the application by Silverleaf Investments for the removal of four free half-hour parking bays and one loading bay at Market Street, so that they could widen the footpath and re-instate the awning along the Manning Building to improve pedestrian amenity and safety, and lighting under the awning.

The attempt to restrict the use of shops there to retail only and not allow alfresco was squashed with a motion by Councillor Adin Lang who argued that market forces should decide the use of shops, not council policy.

I find it hard to accept the argument for better pedestrian safety and amenity, as Silverleaf’s Robert O’Brien did, when the relatively narrow footpath can be made even narrower and more cluttered with alfresco tables and chairs, which will restrict the flow of walkers.

Councillor Rachel Pemberton’s suggestion to plant trees was unrealistic, as trees would interfere with the proposed awning and also on the road side with public transport and tourist busses which use Market Street very frequently. She was correct however that the City should be doing something about the excessive signage as too many A-frames clutter our streets. They have become a hazard an visual pollution.

Councillor Sam Wainwright argued that it was time to relocate bus stops along the Cappuccino Strip, especially near Fremantle Markets. The item was passed unanimously.

Another very interesting item was the Lefroy Road Quarry Local Structure Plan that would allow for substantial development near the Portuguese Club and the heritage-listed 1890s Healy House, with buildings of up to eight storeys permitted.

To maintain good views to Healy House was considered essential, as was public access and connectivity through the site. Councillor Andrew Sullivan said it was a very difficult site to develop and it needed to be a combined effort by the developers, community, Portuguese Club and Council to make it work. It was important for Council and planning officers to have a good relationship with the proponents as it will require robust conversation and compromises.

Councillor Rachel Pemberton stressed that design excellence on this landmark site was really important. The item was passed unanimously.

Roel Loopers

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MAKING FREMANTLE MORE WALKABLE

 

What makes a walkable city, and is Fremantle one of them, was asked at the Politics in the Pubs forum by the Fremantle Network at The Local in South Fremantle on Tuesday evening.

A panel with Olwyn Williams, the CEO of the Fremantle Chamber of Commerce, Dr Annie Matan of CUSP(Curtin University of Sustainable Policy), and City of Fremantle urban and transport planner Martin Spencer addressed the topic before a general discussion

Martin Spencer said that on the walkability index Fremantle gets 72-79 out of 100 and is the 19th most walkable suburb in the Perth metro area.

We need to make the city open, invite people in, and make them walk. Drag people into the shops and off the footpaths, and connect destinations with better signage.

Dr Annie Matan said that being pro pedestrians and cyclists did not mean we are anti car, but we need great public transport and walking and cycle infrastructure to make the city work better. There needs to be a safe and interesting environment for pedestrians, which includes good public toilets, water fountains, benches, shade structures and trees, etc.

“Every road needs to tell a story to our visitors and ourselves”

Footpaths are where we meet friends, and importantly also strangers. It is where we connect with our communities.

We need to create authentic places as they are important, and destinations to walk to, and do connections better, such as walking from the CBD to South Beach or the Fremantle Arts Centre.

Many footpaths are cluttered and become a hazard and Fremantle City needs a strong policy for planning walkability, Dr Matan said.

Olwyn Williams said that Fremantle has got more than anyone else; the port, heritage, the university, beaches, cafes, art, shopping, festivals and concerts, but we are a small community with a small ratepayers’ base, so we need the outside world to come to Freo and make it economically viable to set up shop here.

We need more visitors, more people working here and more residents, and to become a better place we need to embrace medium density living.

Connections with the suburbs is vital and important as Fremantle is not just the CBD.

Road closures in the CBD often have a negative impact on nearby businesses and the City should consider that more carefully. The second hour free parking the City of Fremantle has just implemented, is a very good idea as it will make people linger longer, Williams said.

Wayfinding needs to improve as signs don’t tell you that you could walk just a block further to enjoy Wray Avenue, or that it is a nice half hour walk to South Beach, and we need much better lighting to make us feel safer at night.

Olwyn Williams also said that the High Street Mall is a disaster and the closure should never have happened.

Martin Spencer said it was about time the community took ownership as it can’t be just left to local governments to implement change.

Comment: I believe we need to make the walking journey more attractive and make it a discovery, an adventure, walks where we connect all our Freo hidden treasures, and where we decentralise more and better utilise the A Class reserve at Arthur’s Head, the lawn next to the Roundhouse, Pioneer, Princess May and Fremantle parks, etc.

Fremantle offers a unique experience and that is what our new destination marketing should be all about. People will be encouraged to walk if we offer them a better shopping and lifestyle experience.

Roel Loopers

 

 

FREO POLITICS IN THE PUB TONIGHT

Posted in city of fremantle, fremantle network, pedestrians, politics, traffic, Uncategorized by freoview on September 25, 2018

 

A reminder that the Politics in the Pub by the Fremantle Network is on tonight at The Local in South Fremantle from 6.30pm.

Topic of the evening is the question if Fremantle is pedestrian friendly, so it will be interesting to hear suggestions on how we can improve the pedestrian experience and make it safer.

Far too many motorists don’t give way to pedestrians when rounding corners, and only a  few of them stop during busy weekends on the Cappuccino Strip and Marine Terrace to let pedestrians cross. That lack of consideration, and how/if we can improve it needs to be discussed as well.

See you at The Local. It’s a free event, but meals and drinks available at the bar.

Roel Loopers

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IS FREMANTLE REALLY WALKING FRIENDLY?

Posted in city of fremantle, community, fremantle network, pedestrians, Uncategorized by freoview on September 18, 2018

 

The next POLITICS IN THE PUB by the Fremantle Network is on next Tuesday September 25 from 6.30-8.30pm at the Local hotel in South Fremantle.

The topic is Is Fremantle really walking friendly? and will be discussed by a panel of Urban and Transport Planner Martin Spencer, Dr Annie Matan of CUSP(Curtin University of Sustainable Policy) and Olwyn Williams, the CEO of the Fremantle Chamber of Commerce.

Of course there is also community participation during the Q&A.

Catch up with your community, have a meal and drink, and positively contribute to Freo’s future!

Roel Loopers

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TWO FREO COMMUNITY INFO SESSIONS TODAY!

 

A reminder that there are two community informations sessions in Fremantle later today.

From 5.30-6pm you can look at the latest plans for the Woolstores shopping centre redevelopment at the City of Fremantle at Fremantle Oval.

And from 6pm at the Beaconsfield Primary School City staff will explain the options for traffic calming and pedestrian crossing at Scott Street and Hampton Road in South Fremantle.

Roel Loopers

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