Freo's View

MURAL BIRD ART CAN STAY! YEAY!

Posted in art, city of fremantle, lifestyle, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on October 10, 2018

 

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The beautiful mural artwork at 1 Stevens Street can stay at does not have to been removed, after the FPOL committee of Fremantle Council on Wednesday evening unanimously passed the officer’s recommendation of leaving the art in situ.

A local resident had complained to the City of Fremantle that the gorgeous mural of native birds is an eyesore, but the elected members did not agree with that. There was not even debate about it!

Great outcome for Freo, the city of arts and artists!!! Good taste prevailed.

Roel Loopers

SHARING ART IS GENEROUS AND BEAUTIFUL

Posted in architecture, art, city of fremantle, city planning, culture, lifestyle, living, Uncategorized by freoview on October 8, 2018

 

 

I was surprised to get a few negative comments about the mural artwork on the corner of Stevens and Brennan streets in Fremantle. I am yet to hear strong community protest against visual pollution such as signs all over the place, so what irks people about art along our streets?

Some people believe that individual home owners have no right to impose their art and taste on the community, and they argue that if people want these murals they should do it on the inside of the wall, or inside their house, but not where it is visible to the general public. I disagree with that.

Since humans started building structures others have had that imposed on them, be that bad architecture, ridiculous colour schemes, or garden gnomes, lions, etc.

And where would we stop if we legislated against murals and other art on private properties?  Should we ban businesses as well from beautifying their walls, and is it acceptable to have public art inflicted on us? What about bus shelters and railway stations?

Art, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder, but I believe that most people understand what crappy amateur art is, compared to good professional art, and the artwork in Brennan Street is the latter.

Roel Loopers

NORTHBANK FORESHORE REPAIR TOO COSTLY FOR FREMANTLE COUNCIL

Posted in city of fremantle, development, local government, swan river, Uncategorized by freoview on September 13, 2018

 

Fremantle Councillors at the FPOL Committee were not keen last night to commit $ 600,000 for a hard-edge/seawall structure at the Northbank residential development between the Swan River bridges.

Erosion is worrying the local residents, but Councillor Andrew Sullivan wanted the officers to investigate what would happen if the City did not do anything. Sullivan said he was not convinced the City had an obligation to spend all that money, because it is just bad luck when erosion occurs.

He was not happy to spend half a million dollars and more to keep private residents happy when it diminishes the use of the area for the broader community. There is already very little public space and beach left, Sullivan said

Mayor Brad Pettitt agreed and said Council needed to have a wider discussion about this.

The Northbank development was conditionally approved in 1995 by the WA Planning Commission, with one condition for the management of a foreshore plan, but developers Montheath Properties went into receivership so many of the proposed recommendations were not implemented.

The item was deferred and will be discussed again in late October.

Roel Loopers

FINALLY! FREO WOOLSTORES APPROVAL

Posted in architecture, city of fremantle, development, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on September 6, 2018

 

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The Planning Committee of Fremantle Council made a pragmatic decision last night to recommend for conditional approval to JDAP the $ 15 million development by Silverleaf Investments for a six storey mixed-use development of the Woolstores Shopping Centre site. I have no doubt that the Joint Development Assessment Panel, which is the deciding authority, will also approve the development which is well within the local planning scheme and does not require discretionary height concessions.

The development will consist of 141  hotel rooms on levels 2 to 5, retail tenancies and offices, and a basement carpark.

While the proposed new building is not spectacular and not the desired iconic landmark Fremantle Council was hoping for, it is an adequate and acceptable building for the location, Councillors, planning staff and the Design Advisory Committee believe, and so do I.

The proposed building is not excessive in height or excessive in bulk and will modernise the run down inner eastern CBD and help activate the area. It will replace the current eyesore and will hopefully encourage Marilyn New to also soon develop the even worse derelict historic woolstores to the east of it opposite Princess May Park.

The development, together with the already approved Hilton Double Tree hotel at Point Street and the Little Lane residential development in Adelaide Street will revitalise the area 24/7 and make it a safer place for all.

Just down the road the Match Group also intends to develop a four-storey  residential building behind the former Energy Museum building, where 30 per cent of apartments have already pre-sold.

All these developments will be a game changer for the east of the CBD, with Heirloom which opened last year at Queen Victoria Street, and the LIV apartments opening this month, also revitalising that part of Fremantle.

It has been a very very long road for Fremantle based Silverleaf Investments, and councillors last night thanked them for persevering after many refusals and set backs. It is in my opinion a realistic and pragmatic decision by council, as we could have waited for perfection forever and halt progress in that run down part of the city. It is a compromise but a much better outcome than keeping the status quo.

Roel Loopers

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BUSY FREMANTLE PLANNING COMMITTEE

Posted in architecture, city of fremantle, city planning, development, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on September 6, 2018

 

Fremantle Council’s Planning Committee last night conditionally approved the application by the Western Australian Planning Commission for a new White Gum Valley 3 lot freehold subdivision at Montreal Street, with the boundaries at Blinco, Knutsford and Wood streets.

There will also be a 36 lot survey strata title subdivision, and an application for the 36, two storey grouped dwellings has been lodged on August 10 and will be assessed by the WA South-West Joint Development Assessment Panel soon.

The former industrial area in White Gum Valley is well suited for residential development and the area could also handle medium to high density in my opinion, and offer affordable, student and social housing within a larger planning scheme.

Also approved last night were two alcohol related applications, one for a tavern and gin distillery, the Fremantle Republic, in Pakenham Street and another one for a small liquor store and deli at Freeman Loop in North Fremantle.

Roel Loopers

FREO’S MOONDYNE JOE PUB FOR SALE

Posted in city of fremantle, hospitality, property, Uncategorized by freoview on August 15, 2018

 

Fremantle’s Moondyne Joe pub on the corner of Wray Avenue and Hampton Road is up for sale, so if you’ve got a few spare dollars under the bed attend the auction on August 30.

The site will be sold as an ongoing concern and has the potential for future mix-use development.

 

Also for sale is the World of Renovation building in historic High Street, so check out the SCOOP real estate website for details.

Roel Loopers

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FREO LIV APARTMENTS NEARING COMPLETION

 

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All the scaffolding around the LIV apartment building in Fremantle’s Queen Victoria and Quarry streets have now come down, so I had another good look at the massive development.

I still do not like the monotonous long facade along Queen Victoria Street and also don’t like the design along Quarry Street very much.

Strangely, for this self-proclaimed architecture expert, the very modern south side of Queen Victoria Street, which overlooks Fremantle Park, works the best. The big and  high windows create a lightness that I would have liked to see duplicated at Quarry Street.

The Rick Vermey public artwork in the piazza is a stunning feature that will attract many art lovers.

The Defence Housing LIV is due to open this month, so check the media, or better even Freo’s View, for when it will be open to the public to have a look at.

Roel Loopers

 

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FRIENDS OF ROYAL GEORGE AGAINST HIGHRISE

 

 

The news that The Friends of Royal George community group has been established in East Fremantle makes sense as it is always important for state government agencies to be aware of the feelings in the community, even when East Fremantle Council’s Royal George scheme amendment only allows for six storey buildings in the area.

Saracen Properties wants to build a slim 15 storey tower on top of a four storey podium, but it is unlikely JDAP or SAT would approve that under the present local scheme.

People point out that a state agency approved 16 storeys on the former Subiaco market site, but that is very different from the East Freo proposal. The Subi site is only metres away from the train station and bus transport and that does not apply to the East Fremantle location that is miles away from the Fremantle railway station and not that close to other forms of public transport either.

While I personally quite like the elegant tall spike designed by Michael Patroni’s spaceagency and do believe a landmark highrise would be appropriate in that location, I also believe that the 19 storey proposal does not adequately address the urban infill requirements of the state government.

When we impose very high buildings on a low rise community the main purpose of the development should be to create many new homes for many people, and not as is the case at the Royal George a mere 40 apartments for a few selected well off on 15 floors.

I am not sure if Saracen Properties will present their proposal to JDAP or come up with a much lower building. The architects told me some weeks ago that they are still looking at it on the computer.

Roel Loopers

 

FOR SALE AFTER RECENT PLANNING APPROVAL

Posted in architecture, city of fremantle, development, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on August 10, 2018

 

Interesting to see that the property on the corner of Wray Avenue and Hampton Road, that received planning approval only a few weeks ago, is now on the market. I believe it is a flaw in the planning laws that this is allowed to happen.

Roel Loopers

P.S. Bad news for regular Freo’s View readers. My mobility will be severely hampered over the next two weeks as I have to wear a leg/knee brace, so I won’t be able to be as prolific with publishing blog posts as you are used to.

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FREMANTLE ESPLANADE HOTEL FOR SALE

Posted in accommodation, city of fremantle, esplanade, hospitality, hotel, property, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on August 2, 2018

 

Fremantle’s iconic Esplanade Hotel is for sale! The historic hotel which opened in 1897 is on the market and is expected to attract offers of around $ 110 million.

The  300 room hotel was sold by long-time owner Marylyn New only six years ago in 2012 for just $ 90 million.

The Esplanade Hotel  has been refurbished and restored and is receiving most of its revenue from tourist accommodation and conferences.

It is being sold with a 3043sqm site opposite the hotel at 7 Essex Street, that has 172 parking bays, and a 78sqm leased retail tenancy and a 314sqm office.

I am not sure if Marine House, opposite the hotel, has been sold yet. It was put on the market about half a year ago.

CBRE’s Aaron Desange, Ryan McGinnity and Chloe Mason have been appointed to sell the hotel, so if you got a hundred million dollars under the bed, contact them.

 

Roel Loopers

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