Freo's View


Posted in beaches, city of fremantle, city planning, indian ocean, Uncategorized by freoview on May 31, 2019


The idea by the Tourism Council of WA for a 25km boardwalk from Fremantle all the way to Scarborough is an interesting one, but can it ever be realised?

It would be a hugely expensive project to undertake, have environmental impact, and councils and communities along the path might not like the idea, and who would pay for it?

The proposed new long boardwalk would link the existing boardwalk that links Floreat Beach to City Beach.

I’d love to go for very long leisurely walks along the beautiful Indian Ocean without having to divert into the suburbs to get back to the ocean, but is it viable and has Fremantle Council be consulted about the idea?

I would love to see the Bathers Beach boardwalk extended to the J Shed A Class reserve. That would make a huge difference in the West End.

Roel Loopers



Posted in cafe, city of fremantle, development, kings square by freoview on April 5, 2017

The problems traders in Scarborough face, and business closures because of the massive redevelopment there, sends a message to Fremantle Council to be pro-active and assists retailers and the hospitality industry over the next 3 years during the Kings Square project development that will have serious short-term negative implications for businesses in the area.

While the City of Fremantle is not exactly rolling in money it might be a good idea to stop charging cafes alfresco fees during the development period and also to allow retailers to move out into the streets to show their wares.

Free parking at the Parry Street and Beach Street carparks could also be a consideration for the start of the week to try to support our local traders. If they can hang in there for the next three years they will all benefit from an invigorated Freo economy with new hotels opening, new office workers coming to Fremantle and many more people residing in the inner city. The long-term future for Fremantle is a very good one and well worth investing in!

We don’t want more shop closures, vacant buildings and people going broke, so we need to support them as well as we can. Let’s start talking about it now as a priority!

Roel Loopers



Posted in city of fremantle, government, western australia by freoview on January 20, 2015

The WA State Government’s announcement of a $ 57,4 million investment into developing Scarborough shows yet again that Colin Barnett and his Cabinet don’t care one bit about Fremantle. When was the last time the government spend money on our city? Whilst Scarborough is getting an expensive facelift the promised and planned park for Leighton Beach is not anywhere near realisation. How much longer will we have to wait for it?

The renovation of the Warders Cottages next to Fremantle Markets also have not started after a big media spin about heritage conservation in October last year, and whilst Colin is spending big on lifesafer towers at Cottesloe, Freo misses out again of course because we are not a Liberal seat, unlike Scraborough which is the seat of Minister Liza Harvey and Cott is the Premier’s home turf.

Why, Premier, can’t you invest for example in public toilets and change rooms at Bathers Beach and help extend the boardwalk all the way to J Shed? Why don’t you invest in passenger rail down the coast to Coogee and Rockingham and why, Premier do you treat Fremantle as the Cinderella city in WA?

Roel Loopers


Posted in fremantle by freoview on February 3, 2013

A group of surfers will do a PEACEFUL PADDLE against shark culling On February 10. It starts at 8 am at Cottesloe beach and the group will leisurely make their way to Scarborough. People can join at Cottesloe or from any beach north of it. The paddle will occur close to the coast so no need to be an experiences surfer, surf paddler or whatever floating device one desires to use.

The group states it is doing the paddle “to raise awareness about unethical and immoral culling of Great White Sharks in western Australia”

I am sure many Fremantle people will want to join the paddle.

Roel Loopers






Posted in fremantle by freoview on October 2, 2012

This is the view tourists to the beautiful city of Fremantle were confronted with at Bathers Beach today. I did not photograph this mess very early but between 1 and 1.30 pm, so when the morning was well gone and cleaners should have been all over the place to make our little city beach pristine again. Cottesloe and Scarborough beaches are cleaned well before the early swimmers and joggers arrive, so why is that not happening in Fremantle? Does anyone care and does anyone actually know what is going on in this city? Where are the managers and supervisors? It’s a bloody disgrace!

Roel Loopers


Posted in fremantle by freoview on February 18, 2012

I am worried about Fremantle‘s future, worried because I feel present development plans for the inner city will be more detrimental to the ambience and character of Freo, than good for the revitalisation of the city.

I am for good and sensitive development, and I am absolutely certain that the ugly parts of town need a facelift. The Woolstores, both of them, the Target building, the Point Street car park, the Gas&Coke carpark sites, all need to get some decent modern buildings instead of what is there now. The ugly bits of Queen Street at Kings Square also need to get a work over, as does the Spicers carpark site in Henderson Street. So I am thinking alike there with the City of Fremantle. Where I don’t agree with council is the height and bulk of the buildings, and even less with a massive 17 targeted sites in Planning Scheme Amendment 49. That is overkill!

I’d like to quote some passages from a letter to the editor of the Subiaco Post by renowned architect Linley Lutton. It is about the Perth foreshore development, he and several prominent architects are against. Lutton’s opinion is very relevant to proposed development in Fremantle.

* the plans show little understanding of the unique sense of place.

* the plan lacks authenticity, which is the essence of good tourism locations.

In the same newspaper Cottesloe Mayor Kevin Morgan attacks Premier Colin Barnett‘s comments that Scarborough‘s high-rises have failed to revitalise the beachfront there. Morgan said “How ironic that ground-floor restaurants remain vacant underneath Sarborough’s new high-rise towers, yet Mr Barnett still lauds extra heights as for this not to occur.”

Basically that is what is wrong with PSA 49. It does not take into consideration what an important tourist destination Fremantle is, and those in favour of PSA 49 do not believe a large number of 7-9 storey buildings in the city centre will have an impact on the city’s tourism appeal.

Nowhere in PSA 49 are there suggestions to make the city more attractive to tourists. It is mainly based on getting more people and workers into the city centre and that will then revitalise it and retail will boom. Like in Scarborough and Claremont?

Fremantle city has barely tried to make it a more attractive tourist destination. We have not much to offer but the heritage west end buildings, the Maritime and Shipwreck  Museum, the Fishing Boat Harbour and port. We have not built a substantial cultural centre in town, we have little that shows Aboriginal heritage and history, and nothing in PSA 49 suggests that will change.

This morning I noticed again those things that work so well in Fremantle, and we could do with many more. Wray Avenue was abuzz with the corner cafe full, many people browsing the second hand shops and Galatti’s and Frank’s were doing their usual roaring trade. It’s very Freo, so it works!

Our very tired mall, in desperate need of good modern colourful seating and shade structures, has two outstanding long term operators in Cully’s and the Shepherd’s news agency. Cully’s refurbished their interior some years ago and adapted their menue to modern taste, i.e including two excellent curry pies, while the Shepherd’s keep old fashion country town service, never forgetting to make eye contact with their customers and saying thank you. Basic stuff really!

But then we can look at those who complain about retail being down. Many have not bothered to make their shopfronts and windows more appealing for years, they look tired, unattractive and un-inspirational. Why would anyone want to walk into your shops when you give us the impression you don’t care!

Improving Fremantle is about many of those basics things; good service, good freshly painted shopfronts, creative window dressing, service with a smile, lovely new trees in High Street, good and more seating, drinking fountains, parks and open spaces where people can linger and have lunch, etc. There is nowhere to sit at the Round House for example. It’s one of the prime tourist destinations in Fremantle.

Tourism has been ignored in plans for Fremantle’s future, as council is panicking about losing the regional centre status. Councillor Andrew Sullivan, who would like to see even higher buildings than proposed under PSA 49, talks about a catastrophy if we don’t develop rapidly in the next five years. But that doomsday scenario does not have to happen if the members of the Chamber of Commerce and other retail groups took the lead and started to be actively involved in making Fremantle a better looking place. Don’t whinge and wait for highrise to look after your businesses, start cleaning, painting, do things differently. I walk past shops daily whose appearance have not changed for years. Tired looking old commercial umbrellas at cafes instead of flowers and plants and colours, etc.etc.

Create the ambience high-rise never will, and built 4-7 storey buildings sensitively and creatively, and allow for a lot of space for city squares, play grounds, trees, interactive art works, and much more.

Fremantle council needs to dare to be different because this city is different and special. If we lose what people come here for, the most stunningly, architecturally creative high-rise in the world will not make up for that! Protect our specialness by developing with extreme sensitivity to the character of our city!

Roel Loopers

P.S. Linley Lutton is on the City of Fremantle Design Advisory Panel

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