Freo's View

FREO’S CIVIC CENTRE UPDATE

 

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Here the latest photos of the construction of Fremantle’s new Civic Centre at Kings Square. It’s looking very impressive.

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE SOCIETY TO ARTHUR’S HEAD RESCUE

 

I hear the Fremantle Society has set up a sub-committee that will concentrate on lobbying and trying to get funding for the urgent repairs of Arthur’s Head, so good on them!

What Fremantle Council has been doing about it is pathetic and absolutely inadequate. The area is vested in the City, but they wash their hands off one of our state’s most significant historic and tourists areas and just wait to see if the state government, or anyone else, will cough up the $ 2 million needed. That is not good enough!

I have been told the action by the Fremantle Society will be bipartisan and trying to get as many people on board as possible, so I will be happy to promote anything the group will be doing in that regard.

I have a suspicion that the WA Labor government is not going to do anything about it until the next state election, but that is too far away.

Arthur’s Head has been looking awful for two years now with all the ugly fencing around it. The look at the Whalers Tunnel and the cliff face from Bathers Beach is a total eyesore, but it has been put in the too hard basket by Fremantle’s elected members. I find that extremely disappointing.

So go for it, Freo Society! Lobby politicians from all parties at state and federal level, look for grants, try to get financial support from the resources industries, etc. because Fremantle deserves better than having to accept a major problem that is not being addressed with the urgency it demands.

Roel Loopers

FREO’S KINGS SQUARE TO BECOME MIDGEGOOROO PLACE

 

The FPOL Committee of Fremantle Council will on Wednesday debate the proposal to include Aboriginal names at the  Kings Square Redevelopment Project, and I have no doubt that this will become very controversial in the community.

The new Civic Centre will be named Walyalup Centre, which is the Whadjuk Noongar name for the Fremantle area, so proper acknowledgment of our Aboriginal culture and history.

Kings Square, that was once also called St John’s Square, would be renamed Midgegooroo Place. Midgegooroo was the father of Yagan and a very important elder.

The proposals are in line with the fact that the Department of Communities, which will occupy the top levels of the FOMO buildings, is also considering giving Whadjuk Noongar names to their North and South Campus.

There have long been talks, and complaints, that we do not name significant places in Western Australia with the Aboriginal names for them, and this would be a very good step forward I believe to make a real start with the renewal of Kings Square.

I do not agree however with naming the Civic Centre just the Walyalup Centre and would not agree to call it Fremantle Centre either, since that is not specific enough what the centre’s function is. It should be the Walyalup Civic Centre, or Walyalup Council House or Walyalup Council Centre, so that it is clear what the building is there for.

Roel Loopers

DOES FREMANTLE GET A GOOD RETURN FROM FESTIVALS?

Posted in city of fremantle, concerts, festivals, local government, music, Uncategorized by freoview on February 13, 2020

 

I love the big music festivals in Fremantle. There is a real buzz around town when thousands of young people dressed to a T- and many barely dressed-walk to the venues, but what, besides giving Fremantle the reputation of festival city, do these festivals do for the Freo community?

From my own observation most patrons arrive in Freo and walk straight to the venue from the train station or bus stops, or get dropped off by family or friends, or taxis and Uber, so they don’t wander around our city and frequent cafes.

Even when pass-outs are permitted there is little reason to leave the venues, where there are bars and foodtrucks, and inner city Freo has none of the popular food franchises, so why should festival visitors bother to leave the great ambience of the festival. Being part of a big singalong crowd of 15,000 people, all with the one focus of having a great day out listening to great music, brings and almost intimate sense of belonging, so why pop out to buy food and drinks elsewhere?

So how much really does Fremantle benefit from these festivals, how much does the City of Fremantle charge festival organisers for the use of Fremantle Oval, the Esplanade, and Fremantle Park? What are the financial benefits for a city with a small ratepayers base, that is struggling to find funding for the repairs of Arthur’s Head, the Roundhouse and other projects?

According to the CoF they got $ 1,840 per day, per sector, plus additional payment for the use of carparks, but I don’t know how much that is, plus there is a bond required for the ground restoration.

I assume the per day fee includes the many days for setting up and dismantling events.

The City told me the arrangements with the festival organisers are subject to a commercial agreement, and that the city gets dividend from these large events. If that dividend is high enough is the question I am asking myself.

I wonder why the City of Fremantle does not demand a percentage from the ticket sales, as is the case in some other states, when the organisers make a lot of money. For example the Falls Festival at Fremantle Oval reportedly had 37,000 patrons over the two days, with an average ticket price of $ 150, and that totals well over five million dollars, plus they get a percentage of the sale from the very busy food stalls.

I assume the St Jerome Laneway Festival had well over 10,000 patrons as well, and the average ticket price there was also $ 150, while the Cold Chisel New Year’s concert at Fremantle Park charged an average of $ 160.

That’s big money, and Fremantle needs some of it badly, so maybe financially better deals for the City should be considered by Fremantle Council? What do you think?

Roel Loopers

FACELIFT FOR FREO’S POPULAR RAINBOW CONTAINER ART

Posted in art, city of fremantle, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on February 13, 2020

 

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The iconic and very impressive colourful Rainbow artwork, that is an entry statement to Fremantle at Canning Hiwghway, will receive a much needed facelift

Commissioned by the City of Fremantle and installed overlooking the Swan River and Fremantle Port in 2016, Rainbow by Perth artist Marcus Canning, has been bleached by the strong WA sunlight and needs a decent paint job to bring it back to its former glory.

Rainwater has also seeped into some of the containers, which started to rust, so that will also be taken care of.

Rainbow attracts a lot of tourists from all over the world who take selfies underneath it and is the perfect public art work for our port city.

Made up of nine brightly coloured recycled shipping containers, Rainbow is nine metres high, 19 metres long and weighs around 66 tonnes.

The Containbow, as it is also known, is going to be the end point for the massive Highway to Hell event that’s closing the Perth Festival in March. The event will run all the way from Appplecross to Fremantle along Canning Highway

The show will start at 5pm on 1 March 2020 at Canning Bridge and roll through special activity zones at Tompkins Park and the Leopold Hotel before arriving at the Rainbow in Fremantle at 8:30pm.

For more information visit the Highway to Hell page on the Perth Festival website.

FREO’S CIVIC SHIP BOW A WORK OF ART

 

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The ‘bow’ of Fremantle’s new civic ship is taking on a distinct and interesting shape, as these photos taken early today show.

As far as I am aware all is going to schedule so City of Fremantle staff and elected members should be moving in at the end of the year. I can’t wait to see all the Kings Square buildings open to the public and tenants.

Roel Loopers

LOUNGEROOM COMFORT AT FREMANTLE DOCKERS WOMEN GAMES

Posted in afl, city of fremantle, community, football, fremantle dockers, sport, Uncategorized, women by freoview on February 8, 2020

 

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The City of Fremantle has partnered with the Fremantle Dockers to create a very comfy new fan experience at AFLW games at Fremantle Oval this season.

The Visit Fremantle Chillout Deck will give Freo supporters the chance to lay back on artificial lawn and lounge furniture while enjoying the best seat in the house on the raised and shaded deck at the southern end of the oval. 

Food and beverages will be available for purchase on the deck, with exclusive giveaways on offer for some lucky Freo fans.

There will also be free icy poles for the kids, face painting, giant Jenga and other lawn games on offer.

Entry to all AFLW games at Fremantle Oval this season is free, but access to the deck is first-come first-in and capacity is limited, so fans are advised to arrive early to secure their spot.

The female Dockers had a great season last year, with six wins from seven games, so we can expect a great game this Sunday.

The Visit Fremantle Chillout Deck kicks off this Sunday, when Fremantle take on Geelong in their first game of the 2020 NAB AFL Women’s competition. Gates open at 1.10pm.

The car park inside Fremantle Oval, car park 16 on Parry Street and the Cappuccino Strip car park on South Terrace will be closed to the general public.

Fremantle’s other AFLW matches at Fremantle Oval this season are against Collingwood on 22 February, Brisbane on 8 March and Melbourne on 22 March.

I’ll see you all there!

Roel Loopers

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FREMANTLE’S CIVIC CENTRE UPDATE

 

 

…… and here the most recent photos of the City of Fremantle Civic Centre construction as part of the Kings Square Redevelopment Project. The photos were taken at midday today.

Roel Loopers

Comments Off on FREMANTLE’S CIVIC CENTRE UPDATE

DEALING WITH FREMANTLE FACTS

 

Fothergill Street resident Vern Reid has a bit of a rant about Fremantle’s Council’s One Day in Fremantle event, and a few other things, in the Fremantle Herald today, and I thought it might create some interest here on Freo’s View when I respond to some of his concerns.

Mr Reid believes that One Day in Fremantle was a ‘vanity project’ and questions if this is driven by Council or by City officers. I thought it was very obvious that this was a Council initiative, that was approved at an Ordinary Council meetings quite a few years ago now. It was highly controversial and reported in all the news media at the time, and again every year after at Australia Day. So being informed helps to stop irrelevant questions.

Vern Reid also wants to know what the commercial arrangements are for the leasing spaces in the new Kings Square development and if the state government agencies, which will be moving in soon, pay commercial rent. The answer to that is that most commercial spaces at Kings Square belong to Sirona Capital, and their commercial lease arrangements have nothing to do with the City of Fremantle. Mr Reid surely is also aware that the commercial vacancies in the Perth area are more than double that of any other state in Australia, at bout 17% compared to just 8% on average in other states. So there is little doubt that lease incentives are expected by tenants and being given by property owners.

Mr Reid asks if Fremantle Council applies its usual ‘planning tourniquet’, or if they fast track some approvals. The answer to that is that Fremantle Council for ten years has been pro-actively encouraging development in Freo, hence we now have an unprecedented development boom. But as is the case with all development approvals in all councils, there are planning laws and rules the City needs to apply, and most large development are anyway being approved by the state government agencies JDAP and SAT,  and local councils can only give a recommendation of approval or rejection for those agencies to consider.

And before anyone attacks me that I am an apologist for Fremantle Council, I have only supplied facts. ; >)

Roel Loopers

WHICH EUROPEAN FLAVOUR FOR FREO’S CIVIC CENTRE?

 

It is interesting to read in the Fremantle Gazette today that the operator of the Fremantle Doctor cafe, bar, restaurant and function centre in the new Civic Centre at Kings Square is saying that his hospitality venue will have ‘European flavour.’

We are now in 2020, and thanks to internet technology we can all inform ourselves about what goes on in the rest of the world, so why is it that a hospitality operator still believes there is such a thing as European flavour? It does not exist, for heaven’s sake!

Which part of Europe is Tony Taylor talking about? Will it be Spanish, German, Dutch, Polish, or French flavour, countries that all have very different flavours and cultures, or will we get yet again more Italian food, pasta, pizza, wraps and parmi?

FOMO just over the road from the Fremantle Doctor will offer a unique retail and hospitality experience, according to Sirona Capital, so the new hospitality venue in the eastern triangle of the new administration building needs to offer something special as well.

Roel Loopers

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