Freo's View

FREMANTLE’S ADVOCACY POLICY AIMS TO GET MORE GOVERNMENT SUPPORT

 

Fremantle Council will sign off on a new strategic Advocacy Policy at Wednesday’s FPOL Committee meeting.

The advocacy will be aimed at State and Federal Governments for projects, funding, services, infrastructure outside of the City’s capacity.

Advocacy is the process of influencing others to create change.

An Internal Reference Group will be established chaired by the CEO and with the Mayor, Deputy Mayor and 2-3 Councillors.

The City has identified four priorities for its advocacy policy:

  • Improving public transport
  • Furthering Fremantle’s position as a tourism gateway
  • Creating local jobs around a seven-day per week economy
  • Connectivity, roads, rail/light rail, traffic bridge and bicycles
  • Investment in Fremantle

The City of Fremantle 2015–25 Strategic Community Plan is the overarching document
that sets out the Council vision for achieving the key priorities and commitments on
issues that matter to our community.
The Freo 2029 Transformational Moves document was prepared to support the
Fremantle Activity Centre Structure Plan and illustrates how five key ‘moves’ will help to
rejuvenate and revitalise the city as it approaches its 200th birthday.
Both the strategic community plan and the Freo 2029 Transformational Moves document
are products of a major community visioning project conducted during 2013–14 that set
the blueprint for Fremantle’s future growth and direction.

Fremantle has been the Cinderella for government funding, investment and tourism promotion for far too long because it is deemed a safe Labor seat that does not warrant investing in by both major parties and that needs to change.

Our city needs and deserves major investment from the State and Federal Governments, more prominence in the Perth-centric tourism promotions and a new traffic bridge, as well as the development of Victoria Quay, and that’s just the start.

Roel Loopers

 

 

SUGGESTIONS FOR NEW KINGS SQUARE PAVING

 

 

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Now that the fences have come down around the paving trial at Kings Square I went to have another look at what is considered for the new paving of our city square once the new Civic Centre has been built.

It is going to be hard for Councillors and the public to imagine what any of the suggestions will look like on a much larger scale, so that is going to be a challenge. Once some options have been shortlisted it would be good to get some renders done on what the entire square would look like.

My impression is that some much larger and square paving options have not been included and that many of the suggestions have far too small individual pavers for such a large area, and most of the suggestions are rectangular. It is rather disappointing and uninspiring what is on offer.

For me personally not one suggestion stands out that I think would be great, so maybe other options need to be considered by the officers and more homework to be done on the internet to see what other council have come up with in major city square. It might be a good idea to also ask the Civic Centre architects to make suggestions about the paving.

Roel Loopers

NO COUNCIL SYMPATHY FOR MARKET STREET TRADERS

Posted in city of fremantle, development, heritage, hospitality, parking, retail, Uncategorized by freoview on January 20, 2019

 

It does not look as if the Fremantle Market Street traders will be getting much sympathy from Council in their quest to keep the four 15-minute parking bays between High and Bannister Street.

On Wednesday the FPOL committee of Fremantle Council will acknowledge the receipt of a petition with just under 1,100 signatures against the removal of the bays.

The officers recommend to the FPOL members to “continue to monitor any impact to short term parking in adjacent areas after the removal of the bays.”

Now, I am no Albert Einstein, but I have no idea how one monitors something that is no longer there. It will have to be a very futuristic innovation by the City.

The reason the parking bays, plus the loading bay, will be removed is because of the imminent development of the Manning Building by Silverleaf Investments. The developers want to put a new verandah along the building at Market and William streets.

Market Street traders have set up a fighting fund to take legal action against the City but I doubt that will do them any good.

Roel Loopers

WHAT IF FREO DID NOT BUILD THE CIVIC CENTRE AT KINGS SQUARE?

 

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Since I published the article about the Kings Square new Civic Centre yesterday I had some comments saying they like the open space where the Civic Centre is going to be built, and the Fremantle Society is demanding the building should be constructed somewhere else and not at our City square.

Let’s have a pragmatic and realistic look at that.

The City of Fremantle does very likely have contractual obligations with Sirona Capital and the architects, so that would create a major headache.

What would we do with the empty square? Fountains, trees, shade structures, seating, drink water fountains, more CCTV, etc. would cost a lot of money.

A new Civic Centre has to be built and that will cost close to what the one at Kings Square is going to cost. Where would we build it? The City’s properties which are for sale in Quarry Street could probably handle a 2-3 storey Civic Centre, but parking for visitors would be a major headache.

Building the Civic Centre at the also for sale Works Depot site at Knutsford Street would get rid of the parking issues, but is it a good location for a Civic Centre?

And let us not forget that one of the main reasons for the Kings Square Redevelopment Project is activation of the CBD, so would we really want to pull out the around 400 Council workers and the many hundreds of people who go to the library or visit the administration building each week. That seems counter productive to me.

I am well aware of all the grandiose town squares in Europe, but Kings Square has not and will not be like that, because Fremantle does have its own unique character, on which we can build on and modernise, and progress for the future.

It is my understanding that even after the new Civic Centre has been built Kings Square still has more square metres of public open space than Forrest Place in Perth. Correct me if I am wrong.

Roel Loopers

 

 

SOS-FREMANTLE SOCIETY DROWNING IN NONSENSE

 

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One has to wonder what is going on at the Fremantle Society when one reads today’s tabloid-style advertisement in the Fremantle Herald.

SOS-Save Our Square it yells, insinuating that if the new Civic Centre is built by the City of Fremantle Kings Square will be lost, which is utter nonsense.

Kings Square has been two triangles, separated by the High Street road reserve, for decades, so what is all the Fremantle Society grand-standing about?

The northern triangle is the property of the St John’s church and the southern triangle belongs to the City. That will remain so.

Do the members of FS really expect that Fremantle Council will change the decision they made years ago, when they agreed on the Kings Square Redevelopment Project with Sirona Capital? Surely FS knows the horse has bolted and the start of the construction of the new Civic Centre is only a month or two away.

The Society calls for the square to be reinstated, so they want that big empty space that was created by the demolition of the former Civic Centre just to remain that? And they are happy for the City to have wasted many thousands of dollars on architects and consultants, which would have to start all over again if we were to build a civic centre elsewhere in Fremantle?

How on the ball about Fremantle issues is the Frematle Society when one of their committee members lives in Nannup, another one travels the world, and its president also spent at least a third of last year overseas? Not much up to date local knowledge at FS committee meetings one might suggest.

The Kings Square Redevelopment Project is good for Fremantle, and so are the many other developments in our city. It is time for the Fremantle Society to start accepting that the world changes constantly and Freo will do the same. That is a good thing!

Roel Loopers

EARLY MORNING IN THE FREO WEST END

 

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I had time left between having an early coffee and reading the West Australian and Fremantle Herald before my meeting with a designer about the planned new historic interpretive displays at the Roundhouse, so I had a walk around the West End where I took the photos above.

A group of people attending an art class on the corner of Cliff and High streets, a colourful alfresco cafe in High, a crane signalling rare new development in the heritage-listed West End and a colourful reflection at J Shed on Bathers Beach at the new temporary studio of stone sculptor Jina Lee. Make sure to visit her and all the other Arthur’s Head artists soon!

Roel Loopers

 

NEW BRUSH FACTORY, BUT IS IT BEAUTIFUL?

 

 

The fences finally came down along the Brush Factory development on the corner of Duke and George streets in East Fremantle, so I went to have another look at it this morning.

I know that beauty is difficult to quantify because it has different meanings for all of us, but I do find the modern top-level addition on the old building quite intriguing, while some other parts are just not my cup of tea.

I do not like the darkness the dark bricks create along Duke Street, where apartment buildings have been added, and I find that the northern side of development, which faces the old Royal George hotel, has very strange and awkward angles, almost as if much of it was an after-thought that was added to it.

But the epic development of the former Lauder&Howard antiques building has finally been completed and incorporates the Duke of George jazz and blues bar, so it is in part a good addition for the area.

In the meantime graffiti vandals have started to deface the Royal George again and it is still not known if Saracen Properties will go ahead with the development there after all, when they are only allowed to have a seven-storey building behind the former hotel.

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE KINGS SQUARE UPDATE

 

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I really like the lightness the London plane trees have brought to Fremantle’s Kings Square, and the old wooden benched underneath them fit in well.

New plants are being put in the area where the former Moreton Bay-Christmas- fig tree was, until the Civic Centre and playground are finished and a replacement fig tree will be planted there.

Builders Pindan have put signs on the fence of the new Civic Centre, so hopefully the contract with the City of Fremantle will soon be signed and construction can start asap.

Roel Loopers

MARKET STREET TRADERS UP IN ARMS

Posted in city of fremantle, development, local government, parking, retail, shopping, Uncategorized by freoview on January 12, 2019

 

 

Fremantle Market Street traders have established a fighting fund war chest to take legal action against the City of Fremantle about the planned closure of four 15-minute short-stay parking and loading bays in the street.

The new owners of the Manning Building, Silverleaf Investments, asked Fremantle Council to close the vehicle bays so that they could extend the awning over the footpath when they develop the property, with a tavern and micro brewery at William Street.

The owner of Terrace Men has collected over 1,000 signatures against the closure of the car bays.

It is alleged that Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt told the traders that a safety plan had been completed by the City which recommends the closure of the bays, but the traders claim there is no evidence that this has been done.

From my own experience, walking that street daily, the parking bays are not so much a danger to pedestrians but at times a mere inconvenience when cars drive up onto the footpath and out of town pedestrians are not aware of it.

I observed Silverleaf owner Gerard O’Brien leaving the Manning building with five architects at noon on Friday, so the start of the development should not be too far away.

Roel Loopers

THE FREO YEAR WE HAD IN PHOTOS

 

 

 

There is not much happening in Fremantle during the Christmas and New Year period, with politics on hold, so I decided to review the year through photos I published on Freo’s View in 2018. Enjoy!

Roel Loopers

and also as a slide show:

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