Freo's View

GREEN FREO NOT GREEN ENOUGH

Posted in city of fremantle, development, local government, nature, Uncategorized by freoview on January 9, 2018

 

The substantial residential development that is happening, and is planned for, the east of the Fremantle CBD requires that developers and the City of Fremantle create new green public spaces and amenity for those who are coming to live in the high-density buildings.

Heirloom and LIV residents have very little green space to enjoy with Fremantle Park basically being a sports ground for the Christian Brothers students and sporting clubs. It offers very little in form of seating, shade structures or BBQs. The same applies to the nearby Princess May Park that is a large lawns to kick the footy or play cricket, but lacks seats and shade.

Fremantle Council does have a masterplan for Princess May, but that seems to be on the back burner until/if the Hilton Hotel development next to it is completed.

Then there is the uninspiring Pioneer Park opposite the railway station that also lacks amenity, shade, a playground and good seating, and there are a couple of small pockets of green on the corner of Parry and High Street.

The most inviting green ambience for apartment dwellers at LIV and Heirloom is the courtyard at the Fremantle Arts Centre.

While there is a Green Plan for Fremantle and the policy to increase the tree canopy, there are no plans I am aware off for new green spaces in or near the CBD.

The large carpark, or a part off it, at the East Street Jetty offers the opportunity for a new green space with river connections and harbour views.  It is the only opportunity in Fremantle south of the river to connect with the mighty Swan, as Fremantle Port has stopped the connection from the city with the water front.

There are plans for the massive development of the Woolstores shopping centre site and an eight-storey residential building on the former Spotlight site next to Target, and a four-storey residential building at the former Energy Museum site. All those people will want to connect with nature and Fremantle is not offering them very much at all.

Developers should be urged to create green internal courtyard spaces for residents, and even the Westgate Mall could be turned into a green space when the Little Laneway development is happening.

Freo’s Green council needs to do a lot more to green our city!

 

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE GOOD STORY TSUNAMI

Posted in city of fremantle, election, environment, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on September 9, 2017

 

It must be election time, the cynic in me thinks, because the good news stories coming from the City of Fremantle are abundant.

This week we read that the vast majority of residents love to live in Freo, according to a CoF survey, and yesterday a media release came out about the City of Fremantle planting 500 more trees in streets and parks and 1,000 in bushland.

This, the blurb tells us, is in addition to the 20,000 plants and shrubs planted across Fremantle in parks and reserves:

The City’s urban forest plan forms part of its Greening Fremantle: Strategy 2020.

The strategy aims to progressively increase tree planting across the City to achieve at least 20 per cent canopy coverage.

To achieve this, the City has an ongoing tree planting and revegetation program and is integrating new trees into road and path upgrades where possible.

The City now even has a public relations officer, so stay tuned for a lot more good news between now and October 21.

Under the Local Government act the elected members can not direct the administration, so we will just naively have to believe that the marketing department is doing this all on their own accord. I just noticed some pigs flying over Beacy, as I am writing this. ; >)

 

Roel Loopers

 

ENKEL CHANGEMAKERS FOR CANTONMENT HILL

Posted in enkel, fremantle, fremantle network by freoview on March 28, 2017

The monthly Fremantle Network event upstairs at the National Hotel on Monday evening featured Adam Jorlen of ENKEL and Adin Lang of the newly founded Friends of Freo.

ENKEL will move into the former Navy Stores at Cantonment Hill this year and is a social innovation centre with the aim to create a new generation of changemakers.

The group has a 20-year lease and there will be a big climbing wall, collaboration with Freo Food, and there will be stations for robotics and coding, a school of changemakers and Knowmads.

All activities in the big hall will be open to the public.

The ENKEL concept intrigues me as I like change and innovation, but for the sceptic there seems to be unresolved naivety about it. It worries me that the group only has 55 members when it has been operating out of Victoria Park for a few years now.

I am all for giving the group a fair go and the benefit of the doubt though, because creative rejuvenation is very important for the future of Fremantle, but I have no idea how they are going to survive financially and pay the required rent to the City of Fremantle.

Change is healthy when it is good change, so I definitely will try to get involved with ENKEL events to make sure that the new concept also involves older people and taps into our experience and knowledge.

And ENKEL means simple or easy in Swedish, Adam Jorlen told us. To broaden your horizon, let me point out that it also means nephew in German and ankle in Dutch. ; >)

Adin Lang who just started Friends of Freo as an extension of Friends of Hollis Park, wants to connect the green spine of Fremantle and do community nature conservation work in collaboration with the City of Fremantle.

It is about connecting the community groups at Cantonment Hill, Clontarf Hill, Booyembara Park, Hollis Park, etc. and share tools and knowledge, and tackle unique issues.

I think that is a good idea because community groups often work in isolation of other community groups with similar concepts.

Former Councillor Robert Fittock pointed out that Adin Lang had not included North Fremantle in his map and Adin promised to change that.

I always enjoy the Fremantle Network events and the next one will be on the last Monday of April where people from the affordable and ethical housing project Nightingale will speak.

Roel Loopers

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SUCK IT UP FREMANTLE CITY!

Posted in art, city of fremantle, local government, tourism, western australia by freoview on September 15, 2016

 

It always disappoints me when I see an I don’t care attitude from City of Fremantle staff, as the photos show.

This grass mowing job at Captain’s Lane at Arthur Head is not good enough because the workers just leave the grass clippings stuck to the artworks and that looks awful.

What is the big deal of brushing the clippings off the three works, or using one of those terribly noisy suckers/blowers?  It only takes a few minutes. I am not impressed!

Roel Loopers

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BOOYEEMBARA PARK WORKSHOP

Posted in aboriginal, city of fremantle, community, local government, western australia by freoview on June 16, 2016

Booyeembara workshop

The City of Fremantle is holding a workshop on the future development of Booyeembara Park, especially about stage four opposite Sullivan Hall at Nannine Street.

The workshop is on this Saturday June 18 from 9 am till midday at Sullivan Hall, corner Stevens and nannine streets.

Please register on ParksandLandscape@fremantle.wa.gov.au

Roel Loopers

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DEVELOP FREMANTLE CHILDREN FRIENDLY

Posted in city of fremantle, development, housing by freoview on March 26, 2016

An article on Twitter by Canadian Sightline Institute talks about one of my passions for diverse housing in inner city Fremantle and tells the story of how downtown Vancouver BC has 5 times more kids than Seattle and 9 times more than Portland.

Town planners in Vancouver BC made a conscious decision some 20 years ago to not leave the inner city to singles, couples, aged and low income earners, but to also encourage families.

Apartments and townhouses in big developments have to have dining rooms with easy to clean floors, accessible stroller storage, lockable bicycle storage, and outdoor play spaces, ideally where parents can look out on from windows to supervise the children.

At least 25 percent of the development needs to be suitable for families and 20 percent for low-income people.

High density development needs to incorporate parks, open space, daycares, libraries, community centres and elementary schools, and there needs to be soundproofing between the apartments and between the sleeping and living areas.

This is the kind of development that I would like to see in the Knutsford/Blinco/Montreal street area, and not just a small housing scheme only suitable for singles. I would also encourage developers to build more family apartments with a minimum of two bedrooms in the CBD, so that we get real diversity and not just childless couples and singles buying apartments in new Fremantle development.

Roel Loopers

HAVE YOUR SAY ON THE FREMANTLE GREEN PLAN

Posted in city of fremantle, green plan, local government, nature by freoview on November 4, 2015
Smoke haze at the Swan River.

Smoke haze at the Swan River.

The City of Fremantle’s draft GREEN PLAN is out for community input so make sure to download it from the COF website and put submissions in to make it a really good plan to protect and enhance our public green spaces, increase our city’s essential tree canopy, create more small green lingering nodes all over Fremantle, protect established mature trees from demolition through new development, etc.

Here is some of what the Green Plan says:

The 2020 Green Plan provides the background, rationale and framework to deliver projects and programs over the next five years. Key initiatives and targets include:

 Every resident and worker to be within walkable distance to public open space.  Progressively increase tree canopy across the city to achieve up to 20% by 2020.  Design adaptable open space that allows for future flexibility as the community and open space function and needs change over time.  Planning for future water security to identify opportunities for best available water sources for existing and new open space.  Develop links that increase the amount of flora/vegetation and increase habitats for native fauna and encourage their movement between green spaces and to increase and improve biodiversity areas.

Key projects over the next five years include:  Investigation and identification for accessing public open space in the priority areas of Hilton, O’Connor, White Gum Valley and Beaconsfield.  Investigation and identify options to improve and/or expand public open space is proximity to future high density areas.  Undertaking an Urban Forest Strategy to manage and guide tree and vegetation population across the public and private realm, to increase canopy and biodiversity and to mitigate the Urban Heat Island Effect.  Undertaking water demand modelling to inform future fit for purpose water supply options.  Prepare landscape concept plans for green links and develop a biodiversity plan.

Public submissions closing date is November 11, so participate and be part of the solutions!

Roel Loopers

MORE GREEN SPACE PRIORITY WITH FREO DEVELOPMENT

Posted in city of fremantle, election, local government by freoview on September 25, 2015

election 1 election 2

Nice to see the Fremantle Herald today reporting on the percentage for green space idea I have, to make sure that we will have ample public open spaces among all the new planned development in Fremantle. People living in apartments, office workers, hotel visitors and tourists all will want to enjoy green relaxation nodes with creative seating, trees and shade structures, so I believe it is important to put that in Freo’s planning policies.

Also great to feel appreciated and get the support of Little High Street residents who put some election signs on their apartment.

Ballot papers should be arriving from today so PLEASE DO VOTE, as Councillor Ingrid Waltham also promotes in a letter to the Herald today, and embrace your democratic right to elect the person who you believe will represent you and Fremantle best.

Roel Loopers

ROEL FOR FREO! Beaconsfield Ward. Truly Independent.

Written and authorised by Roel Loopers of 5 Maxwell Street, Beaconsfield 6162.

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GREEN SPACES MAKE CITIES LIVEABLE

Posted in city of fremantle, green space by freoview on September 16, 2015

I was made aware by one of the many readers of my blog of this TED Talk by Amanda Burton, the former Planning Director of New York City, on public open and green spaces. You can either view the talk or read the manuscript of it on the link here:

I am passionate about the creation of many small creative green public spaces spread all over Fremantle and would love to see the introduction of a percentage for green public space in our planning policies. If elected on Council I would initiate discussions with planning staff on how practical such a scheme might be and if it could be implemented within Local and State Laws.

There are many interesting observations in this TED Talk and many apply to Fremantle and Perth, so it is well worth reading it. I just copy the last paragraph as a little teaser.

“So you see, no matter how popular and successful a public space may be, it can never be taken for granted. Public spaces always — this is it saved — public spaces always need vigilant champions, not only to claim them at the outset for public use, but to design them for the people that use them, then to maintain them to ensure that they are for everyone, that they are not violated, invaded, abandoned or ignored. If there is any one lesson that I have learned in my life as a city planner, it is that public spaces have power. It’s not just the number of people using them, it’s the even greater number of people who feel better about their city just knowing that they are there. Public space can change how you live in a city, how you feel about a city, whether you choose one city over another, and public space is one of the most important reasons why you stay in a city.”

Roel Loopers

ROEL FOR FREO! Beaconsfield Ward. Truly Independent.

Written and authorised by Roel Loopers. 5 Maxwell Street. Beaconsfield 6162

FREO COMMUNITY HAPPIER WITH COUNCIL

Posted in city of fremantle, community, local government by freoview on July 10, 2015

This might come as a surprise to many people in Fremantle, but these are the official figures just released by the City of Fremantle:

Results of the City of Fremantle’s 2015 community perceptions survey are back and show improvements in a number of key areas since the last survey was conducted in 2012.

Some of the key areas of improvement (based on levels of community satisfaction) are:

· overall satisfaction with the City as a governing organisation – up 7%

· council’s leadership – up 9%

· youth services and facilities – up 21%

· openness and transparency – up 9%

· value for money (rates) – up 11%

· parks and other green spaces – up 9%

· family services and facilities – up 13%

· access for people with disabilities – up 10%

· conservation and environmental management – up 12%

· planning and building approvals – up 8%

· parking in the city centre – up 8%.

404 phone surveys were conducted with a random and representative sample of Fremantle residents.

Roel Loopers

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