Freo's View

FREO HEIRLOOM WINS STATE HERITAGE AWARD

Posted in development, fremantle, heirloom by match, heritage, Uncategorized by freoview on May 27, 2017

 

The Fremantle HEIRLOOM by MATCH residential development at Queen Victoria Street has won two categories in last night’s annual WA Heritage Council awards for adaptive reuse of a heritage building.

It won the Gerry Gauntlett award for excellence in conservation and also the adaptive reuse award

MATCH converted the former Dalgety Woolstores building, that was built in 1923. into 183 residential units.

The judges said that the building was a testament to the dedication and financial commitment of MATCH and they had used innovative solutions.

The Heirloom development was financially supported by Sirona Capital, which will start the Kings Square Project in the next few weeks, helping to rebuild the Fremantle economy.

Hillcrest in North Fremantle received a commendation for the conservation work done on it.

Roel Loopers

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FICRA LACKING VISION

Posted in city of fremantle, community, Uncategorized by freoview on May 24, 2017

 

Mary Rose Baker, the convenor of the Fremantle Inner City Residents Association also spoke at the Fremantle Network event on Monday evening and said her talk had forced the members to focus on what FICRA’s visions and priorities are:

Preservation of significant heritage, support for compatible development, heritage preservation and restoration, preservation of green and public open space, support for Notre Dame University, support unique and distinct Fremantle enterprises and businesses, support for commercial development with good design, no mono-culture of cafes in the West End, security and public order, the City of Fremantle Design Advisory Panel should protect the heritage more.

FICRA is also against the planned tavern at J Shed on Arthur Head and prefers activation through arts and craft. It also supports an ocean pool at Bathers Beach.

I would have liked to hear a few more specific ideas on how to revitalise the West End, especially on weekends and evenings, as it is very much a ghost town during those periods, even when the Cappuccino Strip is full with people.

One thing mentioned on the night is a sign on the corner of Market and High streets to point out Bathers Beach and the diversity of specialty shops along High Street.

I personally am still hoping that one day there will be a small growers market straight under the Roundhouse at Little High Street on Saturday mornings, or an arts&craft market in front of the Pilot’s Cottages.

I would also like to see those cottages lit at night to make them a heritage feature and to deter anti-social behaviour at Arthur Head.

Other small events could be organised there and the Street Arts Festival should have a stage/pitch in that perfect location at Little High Street next to Chalkys cafe that looks like a roundabout

I was surprised to hear that FICRA does not want to attract the high numbers of visitors the Fishing Boat Harbour has to High Street, because families wandering around there window shopping and taking in the history of our city would create vibrancy.

As ANJEL MS fashion shop owner Gaelle Beech said during the event, we need to find a better word than the ACTIVATION buzzword and Fremantle Council and the community should specify what that actually means. E,g. 500 drunks leaving the new J Shed tavern might be considered activation by some, but a bloody nuisance by others.

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE CONSERVATION WORK GOING TO PLAN

Posted in architecture, city of fremantle, heritage, Uncategorized by freoview on May 10, 2017

 

Union Stores

 

Freo’s View reader Kel sent me some photos and complained about the condition of the historic Fremantle Unions Stores building on the corner of High and Henry streets, saying he feared the conservation work the City had conducted was not done properly and the same deterioration might happen to the Townhall.

I asked the Heritage Department of CoF for a detailed response and received this reassuring explanation:

UNION STORES
Since 2012 there has been an ongoing programme of works to conserve the Union Stores, to address various compliance issues and to upgrade services.
– 2013 – A safe roof access system was installed to allow for regular maintenance of the roof, gutters and air conditioning and also for undertaking conservation works in the following year.
– 2014 – Urgent structural repairs carried out to the parapets and gables. Parapets and gables conserved along with the deteriorated projecting flat surfaces of window sills, cornices and parapet copings. Street verandahs (reconstructed 1987) repaired and strengthened.
– 2015 – Electrical distribution board and fire systems upgraded and the rear verandah (1987) repaired and strengthened.
– 2016 – Ventilation of the basement improved to reduce damp and humidity to protect ground floor timbers and reduce problems with rising damp.

These works are part of the orderly process for the conservation and care of the City’s portfolio of heritage assets. The intention is to address building conservation in a manner that considers levels of urgency, economies of scale, correct sequence and good conservation practice. Many of these items of work will not be conspicuous but are vital to the conservation and long-term sustainability of these important heritage buildings for present and future generations.

Future works are planned to continue the conservation of the building facades once the moisture has evaporated from the walls and the damaging salts have migrated to the surface.

2014 Urgent Conservation Works
During 2012 and 2013 the poor condition of the rear of the parapets of the Union Stores was discovered and remedial works were planned for 2014. These parapets had become unstable due to the deterioration of the soft clay bricks – deterioration that had been exacerbated by well-meaning but inappropriate repairs in the 1980s as well as the painting of the building facades from the 1960s onwards.

Like the Fremantle Town Hall, damaging salts and moisture had seeped into the walls through hairline cracks and were trapped in the walls by cement render and plastic paints. The entrapped salts and moisture led to the deterioration of the soft clay bricks and lime mortar of the wall itself and caused embedded iron pins in decorative mouldings and structural bolts and plates to rust and expand causing cracking in the walls. To address this problem the paint and cement renders were removed to allow the walls to breathe and new repairs made use of breathable lime mortars, hydraulic lime renders and lime wash finishes.

However, the construction and condition of the Unions Stores was different to the Town Hall and required a different approach for its conservation. Removing the paint from the parapets was more difficult because the stucco surface was softer and in poorer condition. Also the early use of calcimine paint and lime wash on the building meant that although the walls could breathe well, not all of the pigment could be successfully removed.

The biggest difference however, was the volume of salt escaping from the walls. Almost immediately after the removal of paint and cement render from the parapets of the union stores large amounts of salt began to crystallise on the surface of the parapets. Within the same timeframe there was only a small amount of discolouration from salt at the Fremantle Town Hall. While the appearance of salt on the surface is good because it shows that the walls are healing themselves, when there is a large amount of salt it needs to be managed to minimise damage to the surface of the stucco. For this reason a sacrificial coating of lime wash was applied to the surface of the conserved areas so that the salt would crystallise on the lime wash causing it to decay rather than the stucco. The building was then left to gradually dry out expel the salts before any further works were undertaken.

Now in 2017 the salt crystals and some of the decayed lime wash has been washed off the Union Stores leaving the parapets looking somewhat patchy but in much better physical condition. This means that when further conservation works are undertaken in the future they will not be affected by salt damage.

We expect that the Fremantle Town Hall will suffer some deterioration from escaping salts as the walls breathe again but it will not be as significant as the Union Stores. Also, because the removal of paint from the stucco at the town hall was more successful, when there is some deterioration it will be less obvious as it will be the same colour as the surrounding stucco.

The Fremantle Townhall will officially be unveiled on Friday May 26 at 11.30 am at the start of the Heritage Festival. It looks absolutely stunning!

STUNNING TOWNHALL CONSERVATION WORK

Posted in architecture, city of fremantle, conversation, heritage, Uncategorized by freoview on May 3, 2017

Fremantle Townhall

 

Someone should get a heritage award for the stunning conservation work that has been done on the Fremantle Townhall.

The last details are being attended to before the entire building will be revealed at the start of Fremantle Heritage Week.

The buildings is now so delightfully beautiful and a real icon in our city.

If parts of it look patchy that is good, as it is a sign the building is now healing itself and getting rid of accumulated salt.

Well done everyone involved and a big thank you to the City of Fremantle heritage department!

Roel Loopers

FREO HISTORY FOR SALE

Posted in architecture, fremantle, heritage, housing, Uncategorized by freoview on May 3, 2017

 

The historic Warders Cottages next to the Fremantle Markets in the Henderson Street Mall still have not been sold and the Heritage Council hopes these six will be sold to one owner.

The Police and Court precinct, including the cottages next to it were sold to Freo developers Silverleaf.

The cottages that have been sold so far fetched on average $ 600,000.00  each.

They are very tiny and definitely not suitable for a small bar as the steps to the first floor are very steep and the rooms claustrophobically small.

I wonder though if the new security gate is really the best solution at these heritage buildings and if not something more suitable and sympathetic to the old style could have been installed. Pretty bad taste!

Roel Loopers

THE FEDERAL THREE WAYS

Posted in fremantle, hospitality, Uncategorized by freoview on April 29, 2017

f 3

 

Perspective and seeing things from different points of view is important to keep balance in life, so I took these Fremantle Federal Hotel three ways photos this morning.

The interesting fact about this is that it is a one-eyed view of the world through the camera’s viewfinder. ; >)

Roel Loopers

NO CITY SUPPORT FOR FREO TOURIST IKON

Posted in city of fremantle, roundhouse, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on April 28, 2017

Roundhouse

 

I am very disappointed and extremely annoyed to hear that Fremantle Council has yet again not budgeted to get power into the very popular Roundhouse tourists destination, so that the volunteer guides can move forward with their plans for new and modern displays.

It does not cost the City of Fremantle a cent to keep the Roundhouse open 363 days a year, as it is run by just 40 volunteers, who also open the historic building up after hours for weddings and event.

Fremantle Councillors constantly lament that they want to activate Arthur Head when the Roundhouse receives 130,000+ visitors a year, but they are not willing to support the tourism industry.

I am totally flabbergasted about that when Tourism WA keeps telling us that tourism is a huge growth industry.

It only needs $ 10,000 to run power into the cells for interactive displays, so that the guides can start to get the funding for the $ 200,000 project for which the professionally designed plans are ready.

I often criticise the lack of priorities at Fremantle Council that seems to always be able to find money for greeny projects, but when it comes to support one of the most visited tourist destinations in our city it just can’t be bothered.

No, let’s just donate another $ 14,000 for a tiny parklet in Wray Avenue that only a handful of people use, but stuff a volunteer organisation that looks after 130,000 tourists a year.  It’s pathetic and I am disgusted!

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE TOWNHALL BACK TO FORMER GLORY

Posted in architecture, city of fremantle, heritage by freoview on March 29, 2017

 

How beautiful it is to see the Fremantle Townhall restored back to its old former glory. It looks magnificent!

Scaffolding is very slowly coming down and revealing more of the great conservation works daily, so walk down to Kings Square and have a look at it.

Roel Loopers

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FREMANTLE PRISON MEMORIES

Posted in fremantle, fremantle prison by freoview on March 28, 2017

 

I used to walk past Fremantle Prison almost daily when I lived in Bellevue Terrace, but that is now many years ago, so when I had to go to a meeting in the old Drillhall late yesterday afternoon I went and had a look at the World Heritage listed building and took this photo.

Roel Loopers

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SUNSET EVENTS’ NEW PLANS FOR J SHED

Posted in arthur head, bathers beach, bathers beach art precinct, fremantle, heritage by freoview on March 27, 2017

Sunset Events is holding a public information session today at 5.30 about their new plans for the number one unit at J Shed at Fremantle’s historic Bathers Beach.

Sunset Events’ previous plans for an 850 patron tavern and 1,500 people outdoor music venue on the A-Class reserve were rejected by Fremantle Council, the W.A. Development Assessment panel and the State Administrative Tribunal, so it will be a tough task to get a smaller tavern approved as that use was deemed inappropriate for the reserve by the two state agencies.

The meeting is at the Drill Hall-former Fly by Night club- at Parry Street at 5.30 pm today, Monday March 27.

Roel Loopers

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