Fremantle Council decided last night to ban the use of plastic shopping bags. This is the third time in five years Council is giving it a try as the previous W.A. Liberal/National government rejected the proposal in 2012 and 2015, but the new Labor government have indicated they would support local councils banning non-degradable plastic shopping bags.
Already other councils have started the same process and Councillor Doug Thompson said that a survey showed that 32 councils support banning the environment-damaging bags.
Councillor Rachel Pemberton pointed out that it was about the material of the bags and that degradable bags could still be supplied to customers.
Councillor Hannah Fitzhardinge said Council should campaign for the general reduction of the use of plastic as it was extensively used. She is right. Single pieces of fruit and vegetables are offered on trays wrapped in plastic by supermarkets, which is not only wasteful but also damaging to the environment.
The foundations for a new artwork are being put in the Fremantle High Street Mall near the corner of William Street as part of the Atwell Arcade development.
I have not heard who the artist is so stay tuned. I’ll put a photo up as soon as it is there!
The boring Good Fridays of the past are over in Fremantle and most cafes are open for business and were busy already just after nine this morning.
I have never seen so many people fishing on the South Mole as today, with (illegal) parking on both sides full.
Supermarkets are closed but the great Peaches in South Freo is open and so are the Fremantle Markets and the Fishing Boat Harbour traders.
The Fremantle International Street Arts Festival is on at the Esplanade from 12-5 pm and there is live music at J Shed from midday and a pancake stall to have some yummy food.
Just go for a wander and explore beautiful old Freo and find more traders open for business.
The Fremantle Business Improvement District-BID will be extended by another three years, but subject to yearly performance criteria.
The City of Fremantle charges CBD businesses an additional differential ‘city centre commercial rate’ and BID will receive $ 356,394.00 for the next financial year to promote and assist inner city traders.
I believe the real issue for BID is to get substantial additional funding because nearly two-third of the money they receive from Fremantle City goes to paying staff, office rent and outgoings, so not much is left to support our traders.
It will have to be seen if private operators are willing to back BID with additional funding, because if not the future of BID is going to be shaky.
The Fremantle Workers Club is holding a Clearance Sale this Thursday at 10 William Street, so go and check it out and buy some bargains.
Don’t forget to go and visit the new MANY 2.0 that relocated from Kings Square to the former Spotlight building at Adelaide Street next to Target in Fremantle.
This retail incubator is full of great surprises and gifts and has so many eclectic wares to choose from.
It is a real pleasure to browse through the large but cosy space and check out all they have on sale. There is also a hairdresser and a cafe, and if that is not enough why not try out the fantastic Thai food at The Loft cafe on the corner of Point Street, just down the road from MANY 2.0.
And there is an Opening Party this Saturday from 5-9 pm!
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!
A report in the Sunday Times today shows that the accusations against Fremantle Council not looking after its retailers well enough and that parking problems keep shoppers away are hot air.
The new Perth Labor MP wants a City Summit because of the dire retail economy in the big smoke, which shows Fremantle’s retail problems are neither unique nor to blame on Council.
Of the 950 shops in the Perth CBD 150 are vacant at a 16 per cent vacancy rate. Along Barrack Street and St George’s Terrace a staggering one in five shops are empty, so it does not look well at all.
We know that retailers in Subiaco and elsewhere have also been struggling for years, so this problems is all over the Perth metropolitan area.
Yesterday the West Australian reported that many restaurants are closing in Perth as well and that shows that we need to do more for tourism, conventions, festivals, etc. and can no longer rely on the patchy mining industry that booms and busts often and lacks the stability our retailers and hospitality industry need.
It is unfair to lay blame for the economy on individual local councils as there is clearly a bigger picture at play well outside the power of local government.
Fremantle has a fantastic new large retail outlet in the former Spotlight building at Adelaide Street next to Target. MANY 2.0 is the incubator for independent small businesses that started as Many 6160 in the former Meyer building at Kings Square in 2013, but had to relocate due to the Kings Square project development.
I like the more compact and cohesive MANY 2.0 retail collective in the new location better than at Kings Square as it looks more lively and like a nicely crowded creative market place that invites to browse and discover cute innovative things.
There is so much to look at and buy so MANY 2.0 should be one of your first destinations if you are looking for gifts for someone. There is bric-a-brac, art, fashion, craft, designers, a hair dresser, cafe, hats and a large variety of other quirky and funky things.
MANY 2.0 is open Thursdays to Sundays but they are already talking about probably opening another day because there are many more people in the area than at Kings Square.
Go and check it out and support local small retailers!