Freo's View

MINISTER LAUNCHES FREMANTLE HIGH TIDE SHOW

Posted in art, city of fremantle, fremantle festival, Uncategorized by freoview on October 17, 2017

 

 

The Hon. David Templeman, WA Minister for Local Government, Heritage, Culture and the Arts this morning officially launched the High Tide show of the Fremantle Festival, with local member Simone McGurk and Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt.

Templeman said it was great to see the City of Fremantle once again leading the way, and  is a fantastic opportunity to showcase WA’s unique artistic talent.

It also allows for partnerships with international artists, such as Felice Varini who is creating the site-specific Arcs D’Ellipse along historic High Street.

Artistic director Tom Mueller of PS Art Space was there, as were many local artists, all in awe of the brilliant Varini artwork in progress.

Disappointingly yesterday’s big storm and rain has damaged the yellow foil on the Townhall, and that is due to the anti-graffiti surface of the newly-restored building, Felice Varini told me.

 

Roel Loopers

Vote Roel for City Ward!

 

THE NOT SO GREAT FREO DEBATE

Posted in city of fremantle, elections, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on October 4, 2017

 

The great Fremantle election debate last night turned out to be a bit of a fizzer, because it was a no contest on my scoring card, mainly because the alternative mayor appeared ill-prepared for it and was not across issues.

I found that Ra Stewart’s aggressive negativity and inappropriate sarcasm was at times uncomfortable to watch.

From the vey start of her campaign I have suggested to Stewart to inform herself better and get her facts right, but even for the most important event of the election campaign she still did not do that. She was at times like a learner driver who can’t be bothered to learn the road rules because she already knows how to change the gears.

While Mayor Brad Pettitt said Fremantle was on its way back with new development and more people coming to live, work and visit, Ra Stewart talked about not having had a verge collection last year and that Fremantle has too many vacant shops, but she did not offer suggestions on how she would change that.

Stewart said the ideological experiment of Council was not working and asked if we wanted more of the same. Fremantle needed someone with her business acumen she said, but offered very few new ideas on what she would do differently and better, but for more free parking and parking concessions for Notre Dame University students.

Why should we reward students for driving to Fremantle? They should be encouraged to use public transport or hop on their bike to free up parking in the West End on weekdays for shoppers and visitors. I believe it is a stupid idea to consider parking concessions for them.

We need to bring people into the city, Stewart said. Agreed, but again there were no suggestions on how to do that. We need shops people can go to, such as camping, fishing tackle, etc. Agreed again, and add baker, butcher, deli, hardware, but how is the City going to achieve that, Ra, if you are elected?

Ra Stewart questioned the diversity and affordability of housing in Fremantle, but Brad Pettitt said Council had mandated that everything from small dwellings, to apartments, affordable housing and family homes should be built in Fremantle. I agree with Stewart that housing is too expensive, both buying and renting, but how Council can influence the real estate market I don’t know.

Brad Pettitt quoted from a City of Fremantle officer’s report to reject claims by Ra Stewart that the hockey and rugby cubs were leaving for Cockburn and was adamant that the clubs would be staying in Fremantle. Ra has claimed during her campaign that the Portuguese club was leaving as well, when in fact they had then just signed an MOU with the CoF to relocate to the St John’s site in Parry Street at Fremantle Park.

Stewart’s response to a question about proposed five-storey development in the heritage-listed West End was strange, when she said the highest building should be the Port building.

Pettitt said the West End was protected from high-rise but the East End created opportunity for buildings higher than 3-4 storeys, and that the Woolstores shopping centre site development proposal was now at the planning department for consideration. That site allows for up to 11 storeys under PSA 49.

Visitors’ numbers are down and we need to do something now and can’t wait four years, Ra Stewart said, but again she failed to come up with creative ideas on how to achieve that. If we wait there won’t be a Fremantle here, she said, to loud laughter in the audience. I wrote down the word naïve, as my reaction to some of her statements.

While Brad Pettitt remained calm and to the point, it was clear that he was annoyed with Stewart talking down Fremantle and that she ignored facts. Her aggressive remark that “Brad is flashing around statistics” was stupid.

What to do with Fremantle port? Pettitt suggested to upgrade the passenger terminal, move the RoRo car facilities to Kwinana and free up the heritage building for conferences, concerts and events, while Stewart suggested it could be used to house the City of Fremantle art collection.

Ra Stewart’s best idea of the debate was to create a super fast internet connection in the CBD, and that should be seriously considered by Council, but cost could be an issue.

The last words of the debate were that Ra Stewart said she is concerned about the next four years and that she would be a voice for all of you, while Brad Pettitt talked about the Heart of Beaconsfield and Fremantle Oval projects and his hope for a significant Aboriginal cultural centre when we celebrate Freo’s 200th year in 2029. I hope my daughter will love Fremantle as much as I do, he said.

During election debates one does get to know the personality of the candidates a bit better, and no doubt everyone who was at the debate will have their own opinion, because we all have different political preferences and ideas.

Former ABC reporter and now UNDA lecturer Peter Kennedy was as always an excellent moderator and needs to be thanked!

Roel Loopers

VOTE ROEL FOR CITY WARD!

VOTE FOR DAD WITH A VISION FOR FREO!

Posted in city of fremantle, community, election, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on September 2, 2017

 

I am never ever late for anything, so it is rather embarrassing that I assumed the speeches at the BRAD FOR FREO campaign launch on Saturday would be held around 6 pm, as the event was from 4-8 pm. However when I arrived at 5.20 the official part was all but over and the place so packed that I had to take photos first.

It means I can’t tell you a thing about the welcome to country by Ingrid Cummins, the introduction speech by Griffith Longley, or what Brad the dad Pettitt said. But I was told that Griff Longley said that the Fremantle Mayor was not about ego, but about a man with a vision for what Fremantle should be and that he was proud to have Brad Pettitt as his Mayor.

The vibes in the packed to the rafters room at The Local hotel in South Fremantle were so great and full of positive energy, and felt very Freo, so that everyone had a smile on their face.

I bumped into heaps of people I know, and I actually remembered some names, which I wrote down to share with my Freo’s View readers.

If you are not mentioned it means I did not notice you, or forgot to take note of it, so my apologies!

Sighted by the first time late in his life Loopy were: former Labor MP Melissa Parke, former deputy Freo Mayor Dave Coggin, Freo Councillor Hannah Fitzhardinge with daughter and mum Jenny, Councillor Jon Strachan and partner Cathy Hall, Councillor Rachel Pemberton, former Councillor Tim Grey-Smith, South Freo Candidate Liam Carter, Kim Dravnieks and Kate Kelly of Roe 8 fame , Paul Gamblin with wife Tracy and daughter Charlotte, the America’s Cup hero John Longley, designer John Douglas and his wife, Ellen Health GP Kathrine, developer Bruce Moriarty, former Greens Senator Scott Ludlam, architect Kieran Wong, marketing angel Sarah Langley, photographer Alma Sahran with her Flying Fallafels husband Ali, Brad Pettitt’s friend Brian Mitchell, former Fremantle Society president and former Freo Councillor Henty Farrar with his Notre Dame uni librarian daughter Sophie, artist Tim Burns, Jason Townsend, Paul and Pat Winnacott, Paper Bird children’s bookshop owner Jennifer Jackson, Deputy Mayor of East Fremantle Michael McPhail, Curtin Uni professor Peter Newman, and many, many more.

And of course the Mayor’s partner Emma was there with their beautiful daughter Aoife, who wore a DAD FOR FREO shirt.

I promise that if I am still alive at the next election campaign I’ll be on time. ; >(

Roel Loopers

CAMPAIGN FOR A BIG ACHIEVER

Posted in city of fremantle, election, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on September 2, 2017

 

Brad Campaign

 

A reminder for those who want to support the BRAD FOR FREO mayoral election campaign that there is a fundraising launch at THE LOCAL hotel in South Fremantle today Saturday September 2 from 4-8 pm.

Tickets are $ 39/$ 29 and that is also covering the cost for entertainment. Carus Thompson will be performing and DJs from Koi Child as well. And according to the invitation there will be a very special guest.

Bar and kitchen are open, so why not have an early Father’s Day celebration with Mayor Brad Pettitt, who will celebrate his first Father’s Day tomorrow, after the birth of his daughter Aoife two weeks ago.

The start of the Kings Square Project yesterday is also a reason to have a party, so come along!

 

Roel Loopers

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POSITIVE FUTURE FOR FREMANTLE

Posted in city of fremantle, development, kings square, sirona capital, Uncategorized by freoview on September 1, 2017

 

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The ceremonial start of the Fremantle Kings Square Project development by Sirona Capital was held this Friday morning, with WA Treasurer Ben Wyatt, Housing Minister Peter Tinley, Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt and Sirona Managing Director Matthew McNeilly.

The electronic and print media also turned up en-masse, and Minister for Women Simone McGurk, Federal MP Josh Wilson, CEO of the Chamber of Commerce Olwyn Williams, attended, as did many Freo councillors and staff.

A special mention should go to former City of Fremantle CEO Graeme McKenzie, who did a lot of the hard work and preparations for this game-changing project. Nice to see him present!

The $ 270 millions project will deliver 25,800sqm of new commercial office and retail space, plus a new civic centre for the City. This is the largest infrastructure project in Fremantle’s history!

More than 1,00 fulltime workers will be working in the construction of the project.

Once completed Kings Square will have more than 2,000 people working there, which represents a 13% boost in the number of workers in the Fremantle CBD.

Sirona’s Matthew McNeilly said the development was an indication of Fremantle Council’s courage and desire to revitalise the city.

I am personally delighted that this huge project is finally under way, after so many years of waiting and hoping.

Those who believe that this project will not have a massive positive impact on Fremantle should stay in bed and contemplate their miserable negative existence. : >)

Roel Loopers

WA GOVERNMENT SUPPORT FOR FREO MAYOR

Posted in city of fremantle, housing, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on September 1, 2017

 

 

WA Housing Minister Peter Tinley strongly endorsed Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt and his council at the Housing and the Future event at the Moores building last night.

Tinley urged people to “Vote for Brad!” saying the success of Fremantle’s urban infill was a fundamental guide for the government to use as an example in W.A.

The Minister said that Fremantle Council has lead the change in the metropolitan area with their strategic planning for revitalisation.

The Housing Minister said it was essential for the government to partner with the private industry to offer a diverse range of housing options, and that Housing was a $ 14.5 billion agency that delivered social outcomes.

Tinley said there was a “structural disconnect with affordability” and that 44 per cent of four-bedroom homes have just a single occupant. He said it was important for future planning to consider what the built form contributed to the community.

REIWA President Hayden Groves surprisingly expressed that the urban sprawl was no longer sustainable and said real estate transactions had dropped from 71,000 in 2006 to only 31,000 last year.

He said REIWA was trying to create greater revenue resources for the government through property, and that the bottom of the cycle was here and the real estate market was more stable.

Affordability was a problem, Groves said, with low income earners priced out of the market. The private property sector also needed  to take responsibility for that, not just governments.

The REIWA President said that changes to negative gearing were a problem because it removed the incentives for investors.

Government support for first home buyers needed to be adapted as it supported the urban sprawl, Groves claimed, and that Labor’s Metronet was a fabulous policy.

It is important to offer affordable rent, as well as affordable housing and the Fremantle WGV and Nightingale developments were great.

Mayor Brad Pettitt, introduced as Dad by the MC, said Fremantle Council was passionate about housing, but it was hard for young people to live in the city. It was important to match up people through diversity and affordability and getting the mix right.

He said inner city residents were estimated to increase by 40 per cent by 2070. At present only 721 people live in the CBD. “Fremantle’s problem is that there are not enough people here.” But we are on the cusp of being a more vibrant city with more people living here, Pettitt told the crowd of developers, architects, politicians and real estate agents.

During the Q&A Minister Peter Tinley said that properties were only affordable once-the first time-after that they returned to the market and often become unaffordable.

Mayor Brad Pettitt said that stamp duty was a disincentive to downgrade for older people, and that the State Government should reward those councils who are doing infill, through investment in their infrastructure.

Pettitt said it could be frustrating for local governments to deal with the State, and it had taken 18 months to get a Planning Scheme Amendment approved.

Peter Tinley said that Metronet was the centrepiece of WA’s infrastructure and housing and transport were working together in steering committees. We need to know who the people are who are going to live near near train stations and public transport hubs, because it is all about the communities we create, not just about living in concrete boxes.

In reply to a question from the floor it was disappointing to feel that housing for people with a disability appears to have been put in the hard basket. Accessibility and adaptability were real challenges, the Minister said.

I was surprised to hear that one in five people in WA have a disability. That is not a minority group, so governments need to do a whole lot better to cater for them!

REIWA President Hayden Groves said he is trying to change REIWA’s thinking, as they felt threatened by urban infill up to now, but that was changing as the urban infill was not sustainable and cost too much in infrastructure. It was important for the governments to give incentives for people who wanted to down-size, or right-size as it is now called.

Housing and the Future was a good begin of a very important dialogue we need to have. I believe a more substantial forum on housing should be initiated after all the election hype is over.

 

Roel Loopers

 

 

 

BRAD PETTITT CAMPAIGN LAUNCH

Posted in city of fremantle, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on August 28, 2017

 

Brad fpr Freo campaign

 

It is always better to find out first hand and from the horse’s mouth, so to speak, what politicians stand for and believe in, rather than relying on the media or the usual conspiracy and innuendo on social media.

This Saturday September 2 Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt will launch his election campaign at The Local Hotel from 4-8 pm.

I understand there is a small entry fee for just over $ 20.00.

CORRECTION! Tickets cost $ 39 and for concession holders $ 29. The launch is part fundraiser and the entry fee pays for the entertainment and toward the election campaign.

Isn’t it amazing how little I know for someone supposedly in the Mayor’s pocket? ; >)

 

Roel Loopers

KINGS SQUARE DISPLAY AT TOWNHALL

Posted in city of fremantle, development, kings square, sirona capital, Uncategorized by freoview on August 23, 2017

 

 

Hello boys and girls, this is your uncle Roelie, the regular provider of fake Freo news, the new council spin doctor(sorry Jason and Paul!), and the election campaign manager for Bradman for the Entire Universe and Beyond, according to a Fakebook page.

Uncle Roelie went to the Fremantle Townhall to check out the displays about the Kings Square Project development. Not that he really needed it, because he has been involved in it from the very first start and community consultation.

Your old senile uncle, who can’t get his facts right, met the Sirona Capital managing director Matthew McNeilly at the first walk around the area to look at connectivity, sightlines, etc. and went to every Kings Square session after that, including the citizenship jury.

But unlike others, I believe it is not good to be ingnorant, and that one should be informed and have the facts before one makes comments, so hence my visit to the beautiful Townhall to see if I could update my knowledge.

Mayor Brad Pettitt and Sirona’s Matthew McNeilly were there, and I saw Councillor Jon Strachan and his partner Cathy Hall, and Beacy election candidate Fedele Camarda was also there, as was developer Bruce Moriarty.

A comment I read, claiming that this Council had not achieved much in the last eight years is not based on facts, yet again. Fremantle has got unprecedented development happening and in the pipeline, that we have not seen in the port city in forty years.

If the Barnett State Government had earlier committed to the Department of Housing moving to Fremantle, the Kings Square development could have been ready by now.

But boys and girls, it’s always easier to blame council rather than dealing with facts. As for Uncle Roelie, he’ll be at the Fremantle Council ordinary meeting tonight to make sure he knows what he’s talking about.

Good night boys and girls. Sleep well!

 

Roel Loopers

 

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EMPTY PROMISES NOT GOOD FREMANTLE ELECTION CAMPAIGN

Posted in aboriginal, australia day, city of fremantle, elections, Uncategorized by freoview on August 19, 2017

 

When will politicians finally stop making empty promises during election campaigns?

The West Australian article today on the start of Mayor Brad Pettitt’s campaign and the Fremantle local council election, reports that Mayoral candidate Ra Stewart has promised to restore the January 26 Australia Day events in the port city, should she get elected.

Neither Ra Stewart nor present Mayor Brad Pettitt have the power to make any changes on their own, as they will need at least half of the twelve elected members to vote with them to make any changes, or implement new policies.

The wannabe Mayor is just exhaling meaningless hot air, unless she wants to change Fremantle Council into a dictatorship where she on her own can decided what goes on in our city. I prefer democracy.

I wonder when she will start promising free steak knives to those who vote for her.

 

Roel Loopers

FREO MAYOR ENTERS THE ELECTION BATTLE

Posted in city of fremantle, election, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on August 18, 2017

 

Brad slogan

 

It comes as no surprise that Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt will be trying for another four- year term at the October 19 local government election, as announced in the Fremantle Herald today.

Well, I actually had he scoop last Tuesday, when the Pettitt for Mayor campaign accidentally went live on Facebook, but I deleted my post on Freo’s View after Brad called me and said he wanted to enjoy his maternity leave with gorgeous baby daughter Aoife, before announcing it.

I hope the fact that Brad Pettitt started his campaign on the birthday of my beautiful late father Nico will be a good omen for him.

There is no doubt that the last four years have often been controversial, and Fremantle Council have been accused of being Greens and socialists, but one cannot deny the economic achievements of encouraging unprecedented development in the CBD, which will set Fremantle on the right course for the future, in my opinion.

I have had and still have my doubts about the One Planet priorities, when council should have been more focussed on other matters, but I strongly believe the glass is half full for Freo and that we are growing, so that our traders will benefit soon from more people living and working in the inner city, and more visitors being able to stay here in new tourist accommodation.

I had serious issues in the past with Brad Pettitt, and what I considered to be his stubborn ego, but he has grown into a strong leader, who is willing to compromise, listen, take advise, and change his mind when better outcomes can be achieved.

The City of Fremantle does need to improve though and do all the basic small things better, and the Mayor and Councillors need to demand that from the CEO. Fremantle City  also needs to strongly improve the way it communicates with the community, as far too many people remain uninformed about what goes on at council.

Why for example does the weekly full page in the Fremantle Herald not report all the Council decisions made every week? Just a three liner per agenda item, that people can follow up on line in the minutes of Council and committee meetings. That is very simple and straight forward communication.

Fremante is on the right track and needs Elected Members who understand local government process.

 

Roel Loopers

 

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