Freo's View

FREMANTLE IS NOT FALLING APART

Posted in art, city of fremantle, fremantle festival, heritage, Uncategorized by freoview on August 17, 2018

 

Arcs D'Ellipse

 

This is one of the last blog posts I am publishing about the removal issues with the Felice Varini yellow Arcs D’Ellipse artwork in Fremantle’s High Street, until the City of Fremantle has appointed a contractor and let us know the final costs of it.

But with all the negativity at the end of the artwork’s life I want to point out something we should not forget and underestimate in all of this.

There is absolutely no doubt from the many days that I was in the far West End-that is every day of the year-that there was a significant increase in visitors to Arthur’s Head, who were queueing up on the steps to get photos of the great optical illusion.

The expressions of delighted surprise when they ‘discovered’ the artwork were a real joy to watch and business owners nearby noticed a definite increase in visitors, as did the Roundhouse.

The promotion and marketing value of tens of thousands of photos being shared on social media of Freo’s historic High Street are immeasurable and something you just can not achieve with most tourism campaigns.

The High Tide Biennale that was under the umbrella of the Fremantle Festival added a new and very creative dimension to the tired festival and I can’t wait for next year to see what they come up with.

Yes, it is disappointing that there are serious issues with the removal of the artwork, but that is now being professionally addressed by the City of Fremantle. It is a very expensive inconvenience, but not a disaster. Fremantle is not falling apart, we did not have an earthquake like the poor people of Lombok, but we had an outstanding artwork by an internationally renowned artist that put us on the map as a progressive and creative city.  Let’s keep it in perspective!

Roel Loopers

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

CREATIVES WANTED FOR PEPPERCORN FREO SHOPS

Posted in art, city of fremantle, creative, retail, shopping by freoview on August 16, 2018

 

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Fremantle creatives who want to improve their exposure and show their work to a large number of people now have the opportunity to rent at peppercorn rent! one of seven shops in the CBD that FREO NOW is making available in collaboration with the property owners. Three of the shop fronts are in the High Street Mall.

Contact: marketing@freonow.com if you are keen to step into the retail adventure.

Roel Loopers

LIV OPEN TO THE PUBLIC ON SATURDAY

Posted in architecture, city of fremantle, development, living, property, Uncategorized by freoview on August 16, 2018

 

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If you like a sneak preview of the Defence Housing LIV Apartments at Fremantle’s Queen Victoria and Quarry Streets you can do that this Saturday from 1.30-4pm.

The stunning artwork by Rick Vermey alone is worth the trip, and it will be interesting also to see what the rest of the piazza that connects the two streets looks like.

And if you are looking to move into an apartment that is walking distance from the Fremantle train station with bus stop right in front of the building, go and have a look.

Roel Loopers

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

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

JIM KIDD SPORTS LEAVING FREMANTLE

Posted in art, city of fremantle, retail, shopping, Uncategorized by freoview on August 13, 2018

 

The JIM KIDD sportswear store in Fremantle’s Essex Street is leaving Fremantle and relocating to a huge warehouse near Perth airport.

It is a shame to lose another shop and I question the new location, as there is no way I will drive all the way to the airport to buy my next comfy walking shoes, so they are losing this customer.

Vacant shops are never a good look anywhere, but unfortunately a sign of the time everywhere, so I hope FREO NOW in collaboration with property owners will find a lot of creatives to move into empty retail premises and make them at least look attractive.

It would be nice if the City of Fremantle could allocate money for artists to at least paint windows of vacant shops and make the best out of a bad situation by creating a new art walk attraction in the CBD.

Roel Loopers

 

D DAY FOR FREO’S YELLOW ART REMOVAL

Posted in art, city of fremantle, fremantle festival, heritage, Uncategorized by freoview on August 6, 2018

 

 

Tenders for the removal and make good of the Felice Varini yellow artwork in Fremantle’s historic High Street finished last Friday, so we should find out this week what the solution is to remove the foil without damaging the paint and render, and what it will cost the ratepayers.

The City of Fremantle informed me on Friday that the artist was only required to have public liability insurance for the installation of the great artwork, but not for its removal, which seems a bad oversight to me.

While I love the outstanding public artwork Varini created in Fremantle, I believe he should take ownership also of the difficulties in removing it.

The photos above show the effort cleaning and painting companies made last week removing the foil, so they would know what is required before quoting on the big job. One of them said it could be $ 500,000 to do it properly.

Roel Loopers

 

Henty's

 

 

DAVID SPENCER SHOWS MIRROR OF ART

Posted in art, city of fremantle, culture, exhibition, Uncategorized by freoview on August 4, 2018

 

Aug 89. Dave Spencer art show

 

Fremantle artist David Spencer will have a joint art exhibition with Margaret Heenan at the Gallows Gallery in Clyde Street, Mosman Park.

The show will be opened on Wednesday August 9 at 6.30pm by former Fremantle Dockers captain Mathew Pavlich.

 

Roel Loopers

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