Freo's View

WHY NOTRE DAME UNI IS GOOD FOR FREMANTLE

Posted in city of fremantle, education, notre dame university, Uncategorized by freoview on November 16, 2017

 

 

I believe that people who think Notre Dame University is bad for Fremantle, and who claim that NDA have killed the historic West End, are not accepting reality.

Visit the Cappuccino Strip at daytime from Monday to Thursday and you’ll find it is pretty deserted, but go to High, Henry, Mouat, Cliff and Phillimore streets and you’ll see hundreds of NDA students and staff on the streets and in cafes.

The cafes on those streets would not survive without NDA patronage, and that’s why some of them close during the university’s summer break and on weekends because there are not enough people around for business without the NDA people.

It is true that after 5pm the West End loses appeal because there is not enough street level activation of night-time bars and restaurants, but NDA is working on changing that, and the acquisition of the Customs House complex will support those changes.

Let’s be realistic also about night-time ghost town accusations levelled at Notre Dame Uni. Ask the pub owners in Freo how trade is on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday nights and you’ll see a lot of long faces, because Fremantle is mainly a weekend destination and not a bustling entertainment centre during the week.

Development of the Customs House complex and possible student accommodation will help activate the West End, but a lot more needs to change in the Fremantle CBD to make it an attractive seven day a week day and night destination, and Notre Dame is not responsible for that.

New tourist and residential accommodation will help to achieve activation and so will more commercial and retail space. Some of that is under way and more planned, so patience is required.

The new buildings at Pakenham and Philimore streets will give NDA the opportunity to move some of its ground level offices to the new site and by doing that free up spaces for commercial use and increase street level activation along High Street.

It is estimated that NDA staff and students yearly spent $ 1 million in Fremantle, probably mainly on coffee and food, but without them the West End would be dead during weekdays.

The constant lament that the university does not pay rates is unfair because educational institutions in Australia do not have to pay council rates, and neither do churches, or Fremantle Port for that matter.

It would be better for the City of Fremantle if NDA had to pay rates, but that is not up to the uni or the city to change that. What should be done though is that when NDA lease out spaces to other businesses for commercial use it should at least pay some kind of rates for those properties, or agree to invest more in Fremantle through the Memorandum of Understanding they sign with CoF.

I am a big fan of NDA and love seeing the students in our inner city, as they create a real vibrancy and activation. The more of them we can keep in town after 5pm the better it will be for Freo.

More students living in Fremantle will increase demand for more small bars, shops, and night-time entertainment and that will help activate the West End after 5 pm.

So let’s encourage Notre Dame and property developers to create more affordable student accommodation in Fremantle. That would be a win win for all!

Roel Loopers

KELSEY ASHE’S ART SHOW IN THE ROUNDHOUSE

Posted in art, city of fremantle, fashion, roundhouse, Uncategorized by freoview on November 15, 2017

 

ashe 5

The Fremantle Roundhouse, Western Australia’s oldest public building was a wonderful setting for a very wonderful art show on Wednesday evening.

Fremantle artist Kelsey Ashe had created ten limited edition drawings as a fund raiser for the Fremantle Fashion Collective and many people turned up to admire and buy her work.

The Roundhouse is a great setting for small events and functions, so keep it in mind.

 

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE PRISON WINS TOURISM AWARDS

Posted in city of fremantle, fremantle prison, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on November 14, 2017

 

old prison fremantle

 

Congratulations to Fremantle Prison which won two major awards at the 2017 WA Tourism Awards.

The world heritage listed prison won gold for Cultural Tourism and silver in the Major Tourist Attractions category.

Well done!

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE FASHION COLLECTIVE ART AT ROUNDHOUSE

Posted in art, city of fremantle, fashion, roundhouse, Uncategorized by freoview on November 14, 2017

 

There is an interesting art show on inside the Fremantle Roundhouse this Wednesday evening between 6.30 and 8pm.

Renowned Freo textile artist Kelsey Ashe has created limited edition artworks for the Fremantle Fashion Collective. All proceeds will go to the collective to support upcoming fashion designers.

Kelsey Ashe’s detailed drawings are hand embellished and have a Fremantle theme, so they are something different and not to be missed.

While up on Arthur Head enjoy a beautiful sunset and the last rays of sunshine of the day on the sublime Felice Varini artwork along High Street.

 

Roel Loopers

NOTRE DAME BUYS FREO CUSTOMS HOUSE

Posted in city of fremantle, development, education, notre dame university, Uncategorized by freoview on November 13, 2017

 

 

Notre Dame University has bough the Fremantle Customs House site that comprises of  three buildings, from the corner of Phillimore and Henry Street all the way to Pakenham Street.

This will give the university significant space to expand and also to consider student accommodation in the heart of Fremantle’s historic West End.

It will also allow NDA to release street level spaces to lease for commercial use and much-desired activation at street level.

Vice Chancellor Celia Hammond said As with all of our projects we will proceed with the redevelopment of Customs House fully mindful of our role as a key member of the Fremantle community and the need to preserve the architectural integrity of such a historically significant building,” 

Although we have not yet decided on the building’s use, the vast floor area and the building’s three-street frontage, will provide flexibility of use and much needed space as the University continues to develop.

And with our commitment to the Notre Dame West End Activation program, it will be an important contributor to the continued revitalisation of the city’s West End,” Professor Hammond said.

A five-storey development of the Customs House complex was only recently rejected by Fremantle Council and the WA Development Assessment Panel, so it is great to see our local university acquiring the properties as it will bring real activation to the West End, especially if student accommodation there becomes a reality.

The university will also continue planning the development of 3-5 High Street, corner Cliff Street, and while these plans are being finalised they are planning beautification of the vacant eyesore.

Well done Notre Dame!!

Roel Loopers

FREO SIGNAL STATION OPEN DAYS

Posted in cantonment hill, city of fremantle, Uncategorized by freoview on November 11, 2017

 

cantonment hill

FREMANTLE DEMANDS CREATIVE ARCHITECTURE!

Posted in architecture, city of fremantle, development, heritage, Uncategorized by freoview on November 8, 2017

 

MSC 1

MSC 2

 

It is slow news day in Fremantle today, so not much to blog about unfortunately.

But walking through Cliff Street this morning I admired the innovative architecture of the Mediterranean Shipping Company new building and the respectful way the old building has been restored to its former glory.

It is fantastic to see that North Fremantle Slavin Architects were allowed to design such a creative heritage of the future building by their client MSC, and I wonder why one of our major developers Silverleaf constantly puts up mediocre development proposals, such as the Woolstores shopping centre and Manning building sites.

Do Silverleaf’s designers not understand the importance of heritage and streetscape, or can’t they be bothered being considered about the unique character of the historic Fremantle inner city?

It is important in this context to hear what professional architect Carl Payne commented about the Manning Building proposal:

In terms of the scale of Village-Fremantle, this is a massive re-defining of a hugely-important central “super-block”. We need to preserve the maximum original structures as is reasonably possible, both externally and internally.
The brewery-barn takes a lot of important old rear buildings – some of the early residential sections of the original street-front commercial, so that’s always a worry, because we lose historic context.
If Council played harder-ball, the design brief could respond by converting these into inter-related “snugs”; like the cosy-corners in European and British pubs. It just needs some strength and commitment from Council; and some imaginative responses from the building designers and their client.
I’m sick of lose/lose.
What about win/win. It’s possible if we try hard enough.
My other additional preliminary comment is that we now have a chance to fully restore/reconstruct all original street verandas, yet we are being offered a banal boxy awning. Not good enough you building designers!!!

I want Mayor Brad to come out strongly; and NOT say that we need to encourage investment and therefore we need to give a little. Getting a bit sick of that from Brad.
He needs to make a stand on what IS acceptable; and what ISN’T acceptable. We can now look back on the last few “development years”……..and measure what is good; and what is not so good.
It’s not development versus museum town any more. Those arguments were had in the seventies.
We need to be more mature than that now.
If the building owners/developers wanna make a buck – fair enough, but not at the expense of the town; not at the expense of the heritage; not at the expensive of missing the point of what Fremantle has to offer.

We just don’t really get it – yet. We go away and look at old towns overseas – rave on about character; and history; and all that. Then we are happy with stuff that chips away at the edges to the extent that all this chipping finally removes what we wanted to keep in the first place. Death by a thousand chips. Will you have fish with that?

Aaaaahhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

———-

Re my earlier reference to a banal boxy awning – I see the drawings actually show a detail, and that includes verandah posts and wall brackets, so there’s a nod to “original” detail, but is this just a generic reference? Or have they done their photo research etc?? Is this authenticity? Or just Disney?
And gee, the Paddy Troy Mall now ends in a basement carpark entry. The road to cars-ville. City of Fremantle, just drop the car-parking requirements please. OR, maybe this is just a client-driven detail, for business-owners parking?? Either way, it just reduces the internal courtyard to roads and car-park access. Do we really want to do this??

 

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE MANNING BUILDING DEVELOPMENT

Posted in architecture, city of fremantle, heritage, Uncategorized by freoview on November 7, 2017

 

Manning Estate copy

Manning 2

 

Fremantle residents have until the end of the month to have their say on the planned refurbishment of the Manning Buildings in the city centre.

The heritage buildings – bounded by Market Street, High Street Mall and William Street – were built between 1902 and 1906.

The development proposal includes the restoration of original shopfronts and facades along High Street and Market Street, internal alterations and conservation works to the upper floor offices and ground floor shops.

The plans also include the partial demolition of some existing buildings at the rear of site, with the addition of two-storey offices off Paddy Troy Mall and a new building for a brewhouse, bar and restaurant at rear of existing buildings on William Street, including an undercroft carpark with 25 car bays.

A community information session will be held in the Reception Room on the first floor of the council offices at 8 William Street on Thursday 16 November from 5.30-6.00pm.

More information can be found on the My Say Freo website or by calling the City of Fremantle on 9432 9999.

People have until 28 November to comment on the proposal.

 

THE BEAUTY OF FREMANTLE. COME VISIT!

Posted in bathers beach, city of fremantle, heritage, photography, Uncategorized by freoview on November 4, 2017

 

freo 2

 

 

I wandered around Fremantle’s lovely West End just before sun set on Friday and took some tourist photos of the beautiful late light.

 

Roel Loopers

ENJOY FREO MELLOW AND YELLOW

Posted in art, city of fremantle, food, Uncategorized by freoview on October 31, 2017

 

High Street from tunnel

Fremantle High Street

 

It is going to be a nice warm week in Fremantle, so come and enjoy the sunshine in beautiful  historic High Street and be part of the Felice Varini yellow artwork.

Great coffee and food at the Yellow Lines Cafe, also known as CHALKYS!

 

Roel Loopers

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