Freo's View

IS WESTPORT SHORTLIST PREMATURE?

 

It is predictable that Garreth Parker in today’s column in the pro Liberal Sunday Times claims that the Westport Taskforce is flawed because it did not consider Roe8/9 as a potential solution, but that is for two reasons. There is no potential Roe 8/9 offered that had a solution for the North Fremantle traffic congestions, as the Barnett government experts could not find a way of connecting the last part of the highway extension into the port, and the second reason is that the McGowan government was elected with a landslide on the promise not to build Roe 8/9.

While I believe the Westport Taskforce process has been very good I am surprised they announced the preferred shortlist of options before environmental assessments have been made about the impact a potential new port in Kwinana might have on Cockburn Sound and what impact the mainly land-based transport options would have on local communities away from Leach Highway and North Fremantle.

What if the EPA and other agencies rule that marine life would be far too much threatened in Cockburn Sound and that a new port is not acceptable? Do we start from scratch again and repeat the whole expensive progress without a new Kwinana port as an option?

Public information and transparency are very important, but maybe it was just premature to announce a shortlist of options with a new Kwinana port as the first option before we understand the impact it might have on the very important Cockburn Sound.

Roel Loopers

CONNECTING FREO’S FUTURE TO THE PAST

 

I enjoy talking with architects, city planners and developers about Fremantle’s future and have found it educational and inspiring to have discussions with City of Fremantle heritage coordinator architect Alan Kelsall about how we should try to grow Fremantle.

Alan and I agree that in general the Fremantle community recognises that the need for regeneration of the city is necessary and that it is desirable if done well: if it is managed, planned and implemented in ways that reinforce and sustain the sense of Fremantle’s distinctiveness embodied in it, such as the rich mix of built heritage and unique urban character.

However, without broad, long-term public support and commitment to the planning vision for Fremantle it is unlikely to be successful. As a community we therefore need to have a clear understanding of what we mean when we try to articulate it. The ultimate outcome will set the standard for good design within Freo’s heritage areas and getting it right is essential to securing the future of our heritage buildings.

Let’s consider Fremantle’s history and what it means in the context of future growth of our city. Fremantle was developed as a port town and a centre of trade, and for most of its history it was prosperous and acknowledged as the second city in the metro area. That underscores the city’s distinct character and its rich heritage.

The prosperity of Fremantle encouraged the construction of its present heritage buildings. These developments were not simply utilitarian or profit based, but showed a desire to display a mix of business confidence and civic pride. That is probably why these buildings have a quality that people continue to find attractive, and why most people in our community believe it is worth conserving them, not only as memorial of the past but also as exemplars of successful, high quality architecture, urban design and city planning.

Fremantle had buildings with a strong association with the working port, but also buildings that provided a diverse mix of uses. These included schools, shops, places to work and socialise, etc. which people living in its densely populated catchment could reach on foot or by public transport. It is what we now consider to be an example of sustainable urban design.

Fremantle Port played a primary role in Freo’s success and its distinct character due to the facts that processing, storage and distribution of export and import commodities took place in buildings located near the harbour. It created the mutual interdependence between the port and the city that generated and sustained our port city character.

However this pattern of beneficial evolution changed in 1969 with the introduction of containerisation, which caused profound changes in Fremantle, not only because it changed the way in which ships were loaded and unloaded but also because storage and distribution of export and import commodities no longer took place near the harbour. These changes completely severed the earlier mutual supporting interdependencies between the harbour, city centre and surrounding residential suburbs. The changes impacted not only on shipping and its associated industries but also affected the commercial, retail, social and residential vitality of the city. In addition it caused deterioration of the quality of public areas and less appreciation of the worth of its heritage buildings.

It is obviously impossible, and probably not even desirable, to try to replicate the primary role played by the port in the past, but it is possible, through new higher density mixed-use development located between Victoria Quay and Kings Square, within reach of the railway station, to reproduce the type of mutually supporting interdependencies that used to exist between the port and the city centre. For this to be successful though it demands that development is guided by integrated strategic planning that is inspired, but not limited, by the past to create the conditions of genuine everyday activities, that should come as a result of more people living and working and enjoying social leisure time in all its diversity within the same area.

It is important to recognise that the role residential development on appropriate sites in the CBD can play is crucial to generating the vitality and resilience needed to cope with future problems and to adjust to changing circumstances. A fundamental benefit of regenerating and revitalising the area in this way is that it would promote positive change and would contribute to re-establishing Fremantle’s city centre as the heart of the community, which has already started with the Kings Square redevelopment project.

If Fremantle’s heritage is not managed carefully because it is considered to be too hard it will be at risk of being lost and with this its potential to enrich the city in ways that give a sense of distinctiveness, meaning and quality to the places in which people live and work, as well as the sense of destination that attracts people to Freo and makes them want to come and spend time in our city and thus contribute to secure its future.

It is a huge challenge to get it right, but with respectful dialogue between developers, city planners and the community we can all positively contribute to Fremantle’s progress and future.

Roel Loopers

A huge thank you to Alan Kelsall for his collaboration with constructing this article!

 

 

Comments Off on CONNECTING FREO’S FUTURE TO THE PAST

HUGE CONTAINER SHIPS ARRIVE AT FREMANTLE PORT

Posted in city of fremantle, containers, fremantle ports, maritime, Uncategorized by freoview on July 15, 2019

 

Skarstind

 

One of the biggest container ships ever to arrive in Fremantle Port will arrive this evening at 8pm.

The Maersk Skarstind is 300 metres long and can carry more than 9,400 containers.

The Skarstind is due to depart tomorrow at 4.30pm so take the kids to the South or North mole and have a look!

Another huge container vessel, the MSC Elma will arrive in Fremantle on July 20.

Roel Loopers

Comments Off on HUGE CONTAINER SHIPS ARRIVE AT FREMANTLE PORT

WHARFIES STRIKE AT FREMANTLE PORT

 

port cranes at sunset

 

Wharfies at DP World stevedores in Fremantle Port will go on a 48-hour strike this Thursday. This is part of a national strike for a new enterprise bargaining agreement.

Roel Loopers

Comments Off on WHARFIES STRIKE AT FREMANTLE PORT

VERY RAINY FREMANTLE DAY

Posted in city of fremantle, fremantle ports, Uncategorized, weather by freoview on July 4, 2019

 

 

What a dreadful day! This is what it looked like at 9am on the South Mole when the front moved in and it has been raining in Fremantle ever since.

Roel Loopers

Comments Off on VERY RAINY FREMANTLE DAY

FREMANTLE’S OCEAN COLOURS

Posted in city of fremantle, fremantle ports, indian ocean, maritime, Uncategorized by freoview on June 21, 2019

 

ocean colours 1

 

The predictions are is that it is going to be a pretty awful weekend with rain and storms and even lightning and thunder, so here a bit of Fremantle colour to help you through the next couple of days. Stay warm and dry!

Roel Loopers

Comments Off on FREMANTLE’S OCEAN COLOURS

HIGH STREET UPGRADE IMPACT ON TREES

Posted in city of fremantle, environment, freight, fremantle ports, traffic, trees, Uncategorized by freoview on June 21, 2019

 

trees-on-high-street

MAINROADS has supplied the above graph to show how many trees will be saved and which ones will be lost for the Fremantle High Street Upgrade, which is anticipated to make the freight journey to Fremantle Port faster and easier.

Work is due to start in just a few months from now and will take some of the public golf course.

Roel Loopers

Comments Off on HIGH STREET UPGRADE IMPACT ON TREES

MOST TREES RETAINED AT HIGH STREET UPGRADE

 

MAINROADS has issued a statement concerning the preservation of trees at the Fremantle High Street Upgrade project, which I post in part below.

There is still no word if the City of Fremantle will receive land at Clontarf Hill in exchange for the loss of CoF land for the High Street Upgrade.

Since Commonwealth and State funding was received in May 2017, we have been working in partnership with the City of Fremantle to develop a concept plan that meets the key objective of improving safety on High Street, while minimising impacts to the surrounding environment – particularly established trees. These measures include:

Overall clearing footprint: There are 245 large trees in the project area between Carrington Street and Stirling

Highway. While earlier versions of this project would have required significant clearing, our final concept design retains at least 178 (or 72%) of these trees. 67 (28%) will be cleared.

Nesting hollows: No current or potential nesting hollows for black cockatoos or other species are impacted by the project.

Future potential breeding trees: 64 (of 245) trees within the project area are considered to be future potential breeding trees (there is no current evidence of breeding).

The project will retain at least 48 (75%) of these trees. 16 (25%) will be cleared.

Tuart trees: 31 trees within the project area are tuarts. We’ve changed our design to save at least 13 of these tuarts. This includes specimens close to the Fremantle Netball Centre estimated to be between 40 and 50 years old.

Design changes: The project will provide a tree-lined median between the eastbound and westbound carriageways. While providing an attractive gateway into the city, this measure allows 28 trees to be preserved.

Landscaping and Urban Design: We have developed a Landscape and Urban Design Framework and specified a high standard of urban design for the project through consultation with local stakeholders including the City of Fremantle and the local community. The detailed development of the urban design will involve a coordinated team of urban designers, landscape architects, a public artist and public arts coordinator, and will include further consultation with local stakeholders. The detailed landscaping plan comprises soft landscaping, involving extensive planting and revegetation with species appropriate to the local area. The planting work will be done by a specialist contractor in the first winter following construction completion.

Roel Loopers

Comments Off on MOST TREES RETAINED AT HIGH STREET UPGRADE

FOOD TRUCKS AT B SHED TONIGHT

Posted in city of fremantle, food, fremantle ports, Uncategorized by freoview on June 17, 2019

 

food trucks

 

The winter location for the Food Trucks Under The Bridge is at B Shed on Victoria Quay and it is on tonight and every Monday from 5-8pm.

It is a lovely spot to watch the sun set and see ships arriving and departing from Fremantle Port, so take the family or just yourself and enjoy a good meal from some of our best food trucks.

Roel Loopers

FOOD TRUCKS AT B SHED TONIGHT!

Posted in city of fremantle, food, fremantle ports, Uncategorized by freoview on June 3, 2019

 

Under The Bridge

 

The very popular Under The Bridge Food Trucks event will be held for the first time tonight inside B Shed on Fremantle’s Victoria Quay for the start of the winter season.

Great food in a great setting with live music, harbour and sunset views, so what better way to spend the last hours of the long WA Day weekend. It is on from 5-8pm.

We’ve got @eatnoevil1, @piadina_nonna_pina, @juicepalacefremantle and @stampede_gelato PLUS live music!

Roel Loopers

Comments Off on FOOD TRUCKS AT B SHED TONIGHT!

%d bloggers like this: