Freo's View


Posted in city of fremantle, development, heritage, Uncategorized by freoview on April 1, 2019


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Work has started today on the awning along the Manning building in Fremantle’s Market Street to allow safe passage to pedestrians, while at the back in Paddy Troy Lane the part demolition of the additions of the building is still going on to make way for a tavern and micro brewery.

It is all part of the Silverleaf Investments development of the site.

Roel Loopers





It is a concern that after a year of negotiations the City of Fremantle and Silverleaf Investments still have not reached agreement about the completion of the Atwell Arcade new four-storey building.

The item was on a Planning Committee agenda over a year ago where Councillors were asked to demand that the building had to be finished to planning approvalĀ  specifications, but a motion by Councillor Rachel Pemberton was carried that officers would try to negotiate a compromise with the developers.

That this still has not happened is a worry, because Silverleaf is doing three other major developments in the Fremantle CBD; Woolstores, Manning building, Henderson Street Police&Justice complex. Will they be completed to planning approval specifications?

Silverleaf are a major player in inner city Fremantle development and that is important and good for our city. At least they don’t sit for years on properties they buy and land bank, but they rapidly start developing them and that should be acknowledged and appreciated. I certainly do!

But not completing buildings to the specifications of the planning approval given by the City of Fremantle should be a no no, because changes to developments are made often, and details which visually enhance buildings are suddenly left out without Council approval and that should not be allowed.

One of the major complaints from the community about new buildings is the lack of great architecture, so if Council accepts that design features are unauthorised omitted once construction has started we get buildings that are even less attractive than what was approved. That is not acceptable.

Why it has taken so long for Council to put their foot down and demand Silverleaf completes the building to approved specifications is beyond me, especially since there clearly was willingness by Council to find a compromise.

Last time I published a blog article about this issue Silverleaf owner Gerard O’Brien told me it made his wife cry, so let me assure the family business that I do appreciate they are major developers in Fremantle, but that does not mean they should get away with everything they want to do, or suddenly no longer want to do.

Roel Loopers


Henty ad




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Work is well under way at the Manning Building redevelopment by Silverleaf Investments, with some parts at the back being demolished.

Also a quick start by Pindan on the new Fremantle Civic Centre development with earth moving equipment already at work this morning, although the contract was only signed six days ago. Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt and Sirona Capital boss Matthew McNeilly were on site to watch the progress.

And on a naughty, tongue-in-cheek note. Fremantle Society president John Dowson, a fervent royalist, will hopefully just be a tiny bit happy that the Manning project is done by Buckingham builders. šŸ˜

Roel Loopers


Posted in architecture, bar, brewery, city of fremantle, development, heritage, hospitality, Uncategorized by freoview on February 11, 2019


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Contractors for Silverleaf Investments have started on the building redevelopment of the historic Manning Building, which takes up the entire south of the High Street mall and runs along William and Market streets.

The redevelopment will include a tavern and micro brewery and will hopefully help to reactivate Fremantle’s CBD.

Roel Loopers



Posted in city of fremantle, development, local government, parking, retail, shopping, Uncategorized by freoview on January 12, 2019



Fremantle Market Street traders have established a fighting fund war chest to take legal action against the City of Fremantle about the planned closure of four 15-minute short-stay parking and loading bays in the street.

The new owners of the Manning Building, Silverleaf Investments, asked Fremantle Council to close the vehicle bays so that they could extend the awning over the footpath when they develop the property, with a tavern and micro brewery at William Street.

The owner of Terrace Men has collected over 1,000 signatures against the closure of the car bays.

It is alleged that Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt told the traders that a safety plan had been completed by the City which recommends the closure of the bays, but the traders claim there is no evidence that this has been done.

From my own experience, walking that street daily, the parking bays are not so much a danger to pedestrians but at times a mere inconvenience when cars drive up onto the footpath and out of town pedestrians are not aware of it.

I observed Silverleaf owner Gerard O’Brien leaving the Manning building with five architects at noon on Friday, so the start of the development should not be too far away.

Roel Loopers


Posted in accommodation, architecture, city of fremantle, development, hotel, shopping, Uncategorized by freoview on November 9, 2018




Word on the Fremantle Woolstores shopping centre grapevine is that the development of the Adina Hotel by Silverleaf Investments will start around September next year, because Coles is going to spend about $ 6 million on relocating the supermarket further east within the centre, presumably to make way for the hotel lobby.

Just around the corner the Point Street carpark is also still operating, although the SKS Group had asked the City of Fremantle to return the property to them, so that they could start on the basement of the mix-use development, that will also house the Hilton Doubletree hotel.

But we are seeing a lot of development in Fremantle, and more planned, so our city is moving forward.

Roel Loopers



The Ordinary Council meeting of the City of Fremantle had two interesting potential development items on the agenda, the first one the application by Silverleaf Investments for the removal of four free half-hour parking bays and one loading bay at Market Street, so that they could widen the footpath and re-instate the awning along the Manning Building to improve pedestrian amenity and safety, and lighting under the awning.

The attempt to restrict the use of shops there to retail only and not allow alfresco was squashed with a motion by Councillor Adin Lang who argued that market forces should decide the use of shops, not council policy.

I find it hard to accept the argument for better pedestrian safety and amenity, as Silverleaf’s Robert O’Brien did, when the relatively narrow footpath can be made even narrower and more cluttered with alfresco tables and chairs, which will restrict the flow of walkers.

Councillor Rachel Pemberton’s suggestion to plant trees was unrealistic, as trees would interfere with the proposed awning and also on the road side with public transport and tourist busses which use Market Street very frequently. She was correct however that the City should be doing something about the excessive signage as too many A-frames clutter our streets. They have become a hazard an visual pollution.

Councillor Sam Wainwright argued that it was time to relocate bus stops along the Cappuccino Strip, especially near Fremantle Markets. The item was passed unanimously.

Another very interesting item was the Lefroy Road Quarry Local Structure Plan that would allow for substantial development near the Portuguese Club and the heritage-listed 1890s Healy House, with buildings of up to eight storeys permitted.

To maintain good views to Healy House was considered essential, as was public access and connectivity through the site. Councillor Andrew Sullivan said it was a very difficult site to develop and it needed to be a combined effort by the developers, community, Portuguese Club and Council to make it work. It was important for Council and planning officers to have a good relationship with the proponents as it will require robust conversation and compromises.

Councillor Rachel Pemberton stressed that design excellence on this landmark site was really important. The item was passed unanimously.

Roel Loopers



Posted in architecture, city of fremantle, development, food, heritage, Uncategorized by freoview on September 17, 2018


The hospitality grapevine in Fremantle is abuzz today with the yet unconfirmed rumours that Silverleaf Investments has bought the Newport Hotel on the Cappuccino Strip.

The Newport back entrance comes out onto Paddy Troy Lane and is adjacent to the Manning Building, which Silverleaf will be developing into a tavern, micro brewery, retail, etc., so it makes sense for the company to try to control that rundown part of town and improve it.

Sad news to hear that the Miss Chats bar in historic High Street has closed. It appeared to be doing well, so it’s a shame a small bar in the West End has disappeared.

But work has already started on theĀ Republic of Fremantle tavern and gin distillery just up the road at Pakenham Street, so that will help activate the area during the evenings. It is due to open late this year.

Roel Loopers



Posted in city of fremantle, development, heritage, Uncategorized by freoview on September 14, 2018



One thing is for sure about Fremantle’s Silverleaf Investments; they don’t dilly-dally.

Soon after receiving planning approval to develop the former Justice&Police complex in Henderson Street they have started on the exiting project.

Asbestos specialists and demolition workers of ANZENVIRO are doing the preparatory work and were busy this morning when I drove by.

Roel Loopers



Posted in architecture, city of fremantle, development, heritage, local government, parking, Uncategorized by freoview on September 13, 2018


Manning Arcade


The Finance, Policy, Operations and Legislation Committee of Fremantle Council last night approved the application by Silverleaf Investments for the potential improvement of the public realm adjacent to the Manning Building in Market Street, but the item needs to be endorsed still by full council since there was no quorum as two members excused themselves due to a conflict of interest.

Silverleaf wants to put a new awning along the building but that requires that the city gives up the four 15-minute parking bays plus the loading bay, near the intersection with Bannister Street.

Council already granted permission for the developers to use the percentage for the arts money to re-install the veranda along William Street, when the development of the Manning Building, with a tavern and micro-brewery commences.

Councillors were reluctant to lose parking bays but also acknowledged that pedestrian safety has been an issue on busy days, especially on weekends.

Roel Loopers

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