Freo's View

A FREMANTLE TALE OF TWO TRIANGLES AND A SQUARE

Posted in architecture, city of fremantle, development, kings square, Uncategorized by freoview on July 22, 2017

 

There is a bit of ambiguity in this little snippet of the invitation to a Kings Square information session by the FRRAemantle Society.

“The Fremantle Society has from day one expressed concern at the King’s Square Business Plan. That and the flawed King’s Square Urban Design Study by CODA architects have set the parameters for large buildings insensitive to the scale of the historic human scale of Fremantle, the nearby World Heritage listed Fremantle Prison, turning King’s Square into King’s Triangle.” 

It was not the CODA Kings Square Urban Design Study that set the parameters for medium-rise buildings at Kings Square, but Planning Scheme Amendment 49, approved by the Minister in 2012.

PSA 49 identified 13 sites in the Fremantle CBD for high density infill. One site will become the Hilton Doubletree development, the Woolstores shopping centre site is another one, and Kings Square is also one of the PSA 49 sites.

Some of the historic woolstores in Fremantle are well above the “human scale” we constantly hear the Fremantle Society talking about, and the Townhall probably would not have been approved because of its height if FS had had anything to say about it.

The medium-rise Kings Square development will have no impact whatsoever on Fremantle Prison.

The lament about Kings Square being changed into two triangles is tedious, as in 1881 High Street was extended through the square, so two triangles were created then. One triangle belongs to St John’s church, the other triangle is City of Fremantle.

Only in 1960 was High Street closed and the square returned to a square, but the High Street road reserve still exists and St John’s church still own half of the square, realistically making it into two triangles.

Even now some traders in the West End want to reopen High Street through Kings Square to help their struggling businesses, but I hope that will never happen.

High density infill is a State Government requirement, and the near derelict condition of the city east of Kings Square will only benefit from substantial development, that will greatly help improve the retail and hospitality economy in our city.

Nothing is constant in life. The world changes, Fremantle progresses and modernises, and that is a good thing. We don’t live in a museum, but in a living, breathing space full of energy, innovation, change, creativity, and after 40 years of stagnation and hibernation, finally development!

What we need to be far more concerned about than the Kings Square Project and development in the East End is the relentless push by developers to get extra height in the historic West End of the city. That is not acceptable and needs to be stopped!

Roel Loopers

SAY NO TO RUBBISH DEVELOPMENT IN FREO’S WEST END!

Posted in architecture, city of fremantle, development, Uncategorized, western australia by freoview on July 21, 2017

 

Pakenham Street development proposal

 

EARLY WARNING FOR HERITAGE PROTECTION!!!!!

The absolutely inappropriate huge five-storey development for Fremantle’s Pakenham Street and the Customs Building is on the Fremantle Council agenda for this coming Wednesday.

It needs to be refused and it needs to be made clear to the WA Development Assessment Panel(JDAP) that the Fremantle community will not compromise on the preservation of the historic West End!

I understand that the C0F officers’ recommendation is for a robust refusal of the proposal, but we need to be there in force to tell our Elected Members that this is a rubbish proposal. It’s not only too heigh and too big for the heritage precinct, but it is also very ugly.

I will publish more about this once the agenda becomes available on-line at 4pm today, and when I have read all the details of the Fremantle Design Advisory Panel and planning staff.

SAY NO TO RUBBISH DEVELOPMENT IN FREO’S HERITAGE WEST END PRECINCT!

Roel Loopers

GRANTS FOR HERITAGE CONSERVATION AVAILABLE

Posted in city of fremantle, heritage, state government, Uncategorized, western australia by freoview on July 20, 2017

 

 

WA Minister for Heritage, Culture and the Arts David Templeman MLA liked my blog post about the heritage listing of Fremantle’s West End so much that he shared it on his Facebook page. That’s a nice acknowledgement, so thank you David.

I forgot to mention in that post on Wednesday that private owners are eligible to apply for a Heritage Council grant of up to $ 100,000 to help with conservation works.

 

Roel Loopers

 

LET’S GET KRAKEN FREO!

Posted in art, arthur head, bathers beach art precinct, city of fremantle, Uncategorized by freoview on July 18, 2017

 

The Fremantle KRAKEN Festival is on at Bathers Beach all day this Saturday July 22.

Come enjoy a day of free community activities as the Bathers Beach Art Precinct comes to life for this winter warmer for the whole family.

What’s on at Kraken? 

1 pm – 6 pm  Acoustic music at Bathers Beach boardwalk gazebo

12 pm – 7 pm Fashion and craft markets on Bathers Beach boardwalk

3 pm Welcome to Country by Reverend Sealin Garlett (Bathers Beach Gazebo)

5.30 pm  Effigy burn on the beach at sunset accompanied by fire twirling and drumming

12 pm – 11 pm Food and theme camp activities at J-shed

12 pm – 7 pm Food trucks in front of Kidogo

3 pm – 6 pm Drinks at Kidogo

12 pm – 5.30 pm J Shed, Captain’s Lane and Mrs Trivett’s Lane artists open for business

12 pm – 9 pm Chill theme camps at the Round house

Plus roving entertainment and so much more!

FREMANTLE’S UNIQUE HERITAGE SIGNIFICANCE ACKNOWLEDGED

Posted in architecture, city of fremantle, heritage, historic, Uncategorized, western australia by freoview on July 18, 2017

 

 

The new Western Australian Minister for Heritage David Templeman came into Fremantle today, in the company of Freo’s own Minister Simone McGurk, to announce at the National Hotel the official permanent listing of the historic West End in the State Register of Heritage Places.

The Minister said this was the largest single place to be included in the state register. The area of the Goldrush Period includes 250 buildings and 200,000sqm.

Templeman said that the City of Fremantle had played a critical role in the very long process and that the report about it is 574 pages long. It was a process of collaboartion with state and federal agencies, property owners and Fremantle Council and administration.

Fremantle is unique, the Minister said, and the state heritage listing has the potential to increase tourism marketing and attract new bars and eating opportunities.

The listing does not mean however that the place can not be altered and developed, he said.

Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt said he was proud to have been part of the process that took a very long time.

The listing changes the way we understand heritage, the Mayor said, and he quoted CoF heritage architect Alan Kelsall that Fremantle is not a museum and that it was essential to restore and use heritage buildings.

National Hotel owner Karl Bullers said there needed to be more state and national marketing for the historic area and the state listing would be a catalyst to drive heritage tourism to Fremantle.

Heritage and business need to work together as there needs to be a good return on investment.

Heritage is getting quite trendy, Bullers told the audience.

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE PORTS NEGLECT HERITAGE

Posted in city of fremantle, fremantle ports, harbour, heritage, Uncategorized by freoview on July 13, 2017

 

 

Fremantle Ports is badly neglecting the old A Shed on Victoria Quay and that is not acceptable.

The shed is the one closest to the very popular Maritime Museum and should be looked after, so that we don’t have another case of demolition by neglect.

Last year Fremantle Ports demolished the old crane next to the E Shed Markets because it was in such a bad condition, for which they were responsible.

B Shed is maintained better because it has the Rottnest ferry terminal and events are held there, but one has to wonder what the condition of C and D Sheds are when one looks at the awful state of A Shed.

Roel Loopers

FREO COUNCIL NEEDS ARTHUR HEAD RETHINK

Posted in art, arthur head, city of fremantle, culture, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on July 10, 2017

 

arthur-head

 

I have been thinking about this for many months, because I am confused, annoyed, flabbergasted and puzzled. I cannot believe that the same Fremantle Council which has done such tremendously good strategic and long-term planning work has messed up Arthur Head so badly.

It is beyond me that the Elected Members have created the Bathers Beach Art Precinct mess and J Shed debacle, when they were so good at future planning Fremantle in other areas.

The new Sunset Events proposal for a 400 patron tavern at J Shed should still be un-approvable because it is inappropriate for the heritage location and A Class Reserve, but why did Fremantle Council let it come this far in the first place,?

Let’s stop blaming Sunset Events, which has every right to pursue with the tavern idea after Fremantle Council signed a 21-year lease with them. Sunset Events at that time had the support of Fremantle Council for a 850 patron tavern and a 1,500 patron outdoor live music venue. Let’s not forget that!

Why that contract was ever signed, after severe public opposition and even a special electors meeting at the Townhall, is anyone’s guess. I believe it was the stubbornness of certain Councillors rather than common sense.

We now have a stalemate where Council and Sunset Events more or less have each other by the balls, so to speak, and no one can make a move without inflicting severe pain.

Council cannot rip up the contract and Sunset Events won’t get the size of venue that will be a financial success for them, but there is a legally-binding contract that neither can get out off.

The Bathers Beach Art Precinct has been a shambles that created a ghost town at night at Captain’s and Mrs Trivett Lane, where homeless people reside, shoot up and defecate.

The artist’s studios have done absolutely nothing to activate the area and attract more people, and the Walyalup Aboriginal Cultural Centre in a tiny old residential cottage was tokenism at its worst and failed dismally as well.

Only the highly professional Glen Cowan underwater photography gallery bravely battles on, but gets little to no support from the neighbouring cottages, that are mainly closed.

But no one at Fremantle Council wants to admit it was a failure and they keep telling the community and affected J Shed artists that it is a work in progress, when the rest of us know that train wrecks have no future, but for the scrap heap.

Council urgently needs to revisit and revise the Bathers Beach Art Precinct concept because it is not working. It also needs to realise that cutting off the connectivity between Victoria Quay and the Fishing Boat Harbour at the proposed J Shed tavern is bad for tourism, and unfair to the J Shed artists.

Everyone makes mistakes, and great people admit to them. It is time for Fremantle Council to show greatness and start from scratch!

And why are there still no signs on the Number One unit at J Shed that Sunset Events has applied for planning and liquor licensing approval?

Roel Loopers

Comments Off on FREO COUNCIL NEEDS ARTHUR HEAD RETHINK

BY GEORGE! BUT WILL IT BE ROYAL?

Posted in architecture, development, east fremantle, Uncategorized by freoview on July 9, 2017

 

 

It looks like finally something will happen at the Royal George Hotel in East Fremantle, with Council advertising a planned amendment (No 15) to Local Planning Scheme 3 and create a Special Zone Royal George Hotel that will deal with height, setbacks, public art, heritage conservation, etc.

The vacant and derelict building has been an eyesore for far too many years, to the chagrin of local residents and businesses. It became a target for homeless people, vandalism and graffiti, so renovating the old lady and getting it occupied again will be a very good step forward.

But I heard from local residents this morning that there are plans for a ten-storey building on the carpark behind the heritage building and that could become controversial.

Height is not necessarily  a bad thing, but it is the architecture that is often a worry, as the development next door in Duke Street of the Lauder&Howard building shows.

The very boring dark brick building should not have been approved and I feel sorry for the people next door whose house is set back and now intimidated by the scale of the boring apartment building.

It is a real blight on the streetscape of Duke Street and the elected members of the Town of East Fremantle will be the only ones who believe this building is acceptable in a low-rise residential area. Aesthetics? Never heard off it!

According to the signs the Amendment No 15 proposal can be viewed at the Townhall. Not sure why it is not on-line. It’s 2017 East Fremantle!

Roel Loopers

HOW THE FREO WEST END LOOKED

Posted in city of fremantle, historic, roundhouse, Uncategorized by freoview on July 3, 2017

Cliff and High old jhistoric building with Roundhouse

 

CHALKY’S one of my favourite Fremantle cafes in the far west end of High Street posted this historic photo on their Facebook page, so I want to share it with you.

CHALKY’S is in the former Tram Building (second one). The mural paintings inside the cafe depict the Roundhouse, Fremantle tram, and other historic things. The coffee and food is great, so try it out!

The corner building is now a vacant carpark where Notre Dame University will be building their new School of Nursing and Midwifery next year.

As you can see the steps to the Roundhouse were going up from both sides but that changed when they built the railway line to Fremantle Port in front of it.

Take the kids during the school holidays to the firing of the cannon on the gundeck behind the Roundhouse. Every day at 1 pm. It’s fun and bloody loud.

Roel Loopers

SUNSET EVENTS J SHED TAVERN SAGA CONTINUES

Posted in alcohol, bathers beach art precinct, city of fremantle, j shed, Uncategorized by freoview on July 1, 2017

 

sunset events plans 3

sunset events plans 2

sunset events plans 1

 

New plans by Sunset Events for a tavern at J Shed on historic Arthur Head are out for public comment for the next two weeks, so make sure to view them and send in your submissions to the City of Fremantle.

The proposal is for a 400 patron tavern, but plans for a micro brewery and coffee roastery appear to have been scrapped, and there is no application for ticketed music events in the tavern. I don’t believe that means Sunset Events can’t hold concerts in the tavern which patrons might have to pay for, as is sometimes the case at Clancy’s, for example.

Part of the plans look quite good. The small timber deck with a pergola to the south is nice, and if that was all for a 150 patron cafe and small bar I would support the proposal.

But Sunset Events also want to occupy a huge area of the A Class Reserve and put two units (seacontainers?) on for an outdoor kitchen, a bar, and also portable toilets clad in timber at the western side of the reserve.

They will also cut off the connectivity between Victoria Quay and the Fishing Boat Harbour, which will mean that tourists no longer will be able to access the art galleries at units 2, 3 and 4 from the south. They would have to walk all the way around, to nearly the South Mole and backtrack to those studios and that is highly unlikely to happen to the detriment of those businesses.

In consideration for the present artists Ross Potter, Ellen McCarthy, Peter Zuvela, Jenny Dawson, Greg James, Janet Nixon, Jina Lee, Lesley Barrett, and the fact that the WA Planning Commission has already ruled that a tavern is not appropriate use for the A Class Reserve, I am opposing the proposal and hope that Fremantle Council will recommend to the WAPC to reject this proposal also.

Roel Loopers

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