Freo's View


Posted in fremantle, perth freight link by freoview on September 13, 2015

Over a thousand people turned up this Sunday morning for the Bridge Protest against the PERTH FREIGHT LINK. The crowd stretched all along Stirling Bridge and received many appreciative honks from passing motorists.

Politicians Melissa Parke, Lyn MacLaren, Peter Tinley and Alannah McTiernan were there, as were the Mayors and Councillors of affected municipalities.

Here photos of the event that all interested organisations can use free of charge on social media, as long as they give me a credit for it.

Roel Loopers

ROEL FOR FREO! Beaconsfield Ward. Truly Independent.

Written and authorised by Roel Loopers. 5 Maxwell Street. Beaconsfield 6162.


Posted in fremantle, perth freight link, protest by freoview on September 13, 2015

Rethink the link bridge protest


Roel Loopers

ROEL FOR FREO! Beaconsfield Ward. Truly Independent.


Posted in fremantle, perth freight link by freoview on September 9, 2015

Rethink the link bridge protest

Come to the PERTH FREIGHT LINK PROTEST this Sunday under the Stirling Bridge at 9.30 am. It is very important the keep the pressure on the State and Federal governments because the whole process is clearly a shambles, as was confirmed at a briefing with MAINROADS officers yesterday.

There is not yet funding for the final stage and they still have no idea what they are going to do. They want to duplicate Stirling Bridge west of the present one, as that was always planned, but how to address the North Fremantle bottleneck they just don’t know. It sounded like they are looking at an overpass or something else to bypass Tydeman Road, but that could only be for trucks I’d assume as otherwise private cars would end up on Port Beach Road and would create traffic chaos going north along Curtin Avenue

Mainroads said their estimation is that there will be hardly an increase in truck traffic to the north through the western suburbs.

It looks to me as the State is wasting a huge amount of money on consultants and staff hours on a project that can’t have a good outcome and that will destroy North Fremantle and parts of Hamilton Hill, Beaconsfield, White Gum Valley, East Fremantle and Palmyra. RETHINK THE LINK, Premier Colin Barnett!

Roel Loopers.

Facebook: ROEL FOR FREO! Beaconsfield Ward. Truly Independent.


Posted in domestic violence, fremantle, western australia by freoview on September 7, 2015

The State Government is correct to finally start focusing on family and domestic violence says Fremantle MLA Simone McGurk, but it will fail if it doesn’t follow words with action. WA Labor’s Shadow Community Services, Women’s and Children’s Interests  says more resources are needed if the government is really serious about tackling the problem.

Western Australia currently faced unacceptable levels of family violence but under the current Liberal Government existing services already struggled to cope, McGurk said. Without ensuring there are additional resources for shelters, specialist services and education, the government’s strategy is unlikely to reduce family violence.

WA Labor welcomes the government’s adoption of the Labor’s 2013 election policy, which proposed the use of electronic monitoring of violence restraining order (VRO) respondents.

Simone McGurk’s response comes after an article in today’s West Australian by Helen Morton, the WA Minister for Child Protection. Morton wrote that a staggering 40,000 calls about domestic violence were made in WA last year and that in 65 per cent of the cases children were the victims of domestic violence or witnessed it.

Disturbingly the biggest night of the year for domestic violence in Western Australia is on AFL grand final day according to Minister Morton, so maybe the AFL should invest in an advertising campaign against domestic violence during footy TV telecast.

Roel Loopers

Facebook: ROEL FOR FREO! Beaconsfield Ward. Truly Independent.


Posted in city of fremantle, lightrail, roel loopers by freoview on August 30, 2015

Fremantle Council never stops surprising me, so the news report on Channel Nine this Sunday with Councillor Rachel Pemberton, who quite clearly is on the election campaign, announcing the City of Fremantle might implement a percentage for lightrail on parking fees as early as next year, was yet another indication of a lack of reality.

I love lightrail but there is something rather green-as in naive-about the idea. One also has to question why a junior Councillor would announce such a huge project on national televison when it has not even yet been to any of the Council committees. I suppose it is a case for Pemberton of just  getting her face in the media, no matter the lack of substance, and people in City Ward might actually vote for her at the October 17 local government elections.

I quite like Rachel and she is a pretty good performer in Council chamber, but she has not explained why people parking in Fremantle, and  hence Freo ratepayers, would want to fund lightrail to Cockburn and Fiona Stanley Hospital.

I suggested on Mayor Brad Pettitt’s blog a few weeks ago that if he believed there is so much support for lightrail he might want to start crowd funding, as least that would mean those Fremantle ratepayers who want to pay for it can elect to do so, and it might attract funding from far and wide and not only tiny Freo.

Lightrail and all public transport is a numbers game and the Fremantle area needs far more residents before any state government or private operator would invest in it. For Freo that is at least 15 to 20 years away still.

Public transport infrastructure is a state government responsibility and for a small council like Fremantle to want to do it on its own is naive to the extreme, even more so when there never appears to be enough money for basic maintenance of COF properties and important parks like the Esplanade.

Roel Loopers

ROEL FOR FREO! Truly Independent.


Posted in fremantle, perth freight link by freoview on August 30, 2015

PFL White Gum Valley

I missed the PERTH FREIGHT LINK protest of the White Gum Valley Action Group yesterday due to not feeling well at all, so I pinched this photo off their Facebook page, just to show that there was a very good turn out despite the inclement weather yesterday.

Interesting to read the Federal Treasurer’s comments in the Sunday Times today where he totally ignores that the new road would also cater for private vehicles. The bullshit that it will somehow get rid of traffic congestion is untruthful spin. It will actually create more severe congestion in North Fremantle.

Even Premier Colin Barnett admits there is no elegant solution to extend Roe 8 to Fremantle Port.

Roel Loopers

ROEL FOR FREO! Truly Independent.


Posted in fremantle, perth freight link by freoview on August 28, 2015

I received an email from Aidan Kelly who made some good points about moving the new outer harbour to Bunbury instead of wrecking Cockburn Sound and North Fremantle. I believe it is important to put this idea in the public realm when we debate the Perth Freight Link and an outer harbour for Fremantle Port, so here are Aidan’s thoughts:

In summary the required solution needs to cater for the next 10-50 years of growth in Perth and WA and the fattening-up of transport infrastructure in the South West cannot be avoided, the question is how to do that and avoid trashing North Fremantle – perhaps by diverting  a lot of container traffic to Bunbury?
Bunbury has a lot more growth potential in it at the moment than North Fremantle.  It has space and wants more economic activity. Diverting 1 million containers to Bunbury over the next 10 years will save North Fremantle and save Bunbury. By that time the Outer Harbour can be completed and a period of critical reliance on North Fremantle and the Fremantle Port will have passed.
Growing Bunbury port can be a success story.  There is already a good rail link to that port that connects to Perth and Kewdale.  Investment is needed to build-up Bunbury’s inner harbour to accommodate containers and to fatten up the rail link between Bunbury and Perth. There is already a good road between Bunbury and Perth called the Forrest Highway. In some sense this just shifts the problem of development from Fremantle to other areas of WA’s south west but if you read the play the communities of Bunbury and Canning actually want more development whereas North Fremantle and surrounds are basically just sick of it. So it seems that here is a perfect opportunity for a win-win to be found and nurtured by the relevant political and administrative processes (politics the art of collecting and spending money and keeping people happy).
There are more issues to cover, such as the reality that the Outer Harbour may well be better placed closer to Bunbury than currently planned so there’s more work to do on that part of the plan too, however, given the current decision point the Bunbury solution needs to be brought into the discussions. The ramping up of infrastructure through the electorate of Canning would also be a topical issue with the by-election looming.

Thanks Aidan. It is good to consider all options and think out of the box.

Roel Loopers

ROEL FOR FREO! Truly Independent


Posted in fremantle, perth freight link by freoview on August 26, 2015

The North Fremantle Community had invited WA Premier Colin Barnett and CUSP Professor Peter Newman for a Q&A on the proposed PERTH FREIGHT LINK and the community came out en-masse and there was standing room only. Former Premier Carmen Lawrence was there, as were author and comedian Ben Elton and Member for Fremantle Simone McGurk. Freo Mayor Brad Pettitt was there, and it is election time, four Councillors also attended.

It was a surprisingly civil event with not much aggression. Colin Barnett was relaxed and matter of fact about how difficult Stage 2 of the project will be, reassuring the crowd that nothing had yet been decided because it was near impossible to find what he called an elegant solution to get trucks from Roe 8 to Fremantle Port. He stressed the route had not been finalised yet and engineers had not designed the road and/or tunnel, and the environmental work also had not been done yet. “No one will be making a decision tomorrow.” the Premier said, pointing out his cabinet and not the departments would make the final decision.

But he was adamant, and said it several times, that Roe 8 will be built. “No road has been studied as much as the Roe 8 and it will be built so it has minimal impact on the Beeliar wetlands.” Barnett assured the crowd. It will take 2,500 trucks per day off Leach Highway, he claimed.

The Premier also said it was impossible to get all containers to the port by rail and that the 14% we have in WA was the highest freight on rail of any port in Australia, but it was desirable to increase that. At least 70% of freight would be going by truck, and we are talking about 1,2 million containers that need to be moved around the city.

Barnett pointed out that WA accounts for 50% of international trade in Australia and that trade is going up because people buy more washing machines from China, etc. He also pointed out that even when an outer harbour is built at Cockburn Sound, that would take ten years, Fremantle Port will continue as a port and the outer harbour would initially be an overflow port only, but there would be severe environmental impacts on an outer harbour in that location and it “Will be contentious.”

Professor Peter Newman agreed on quite a few points with Colin Barnett but said there was a significant shift in the world to drive less and that urban rail is growing around the word. The Perth Freight Link is not good planning when the end is not clear, he said and “No one questions that the process is flawed.” “We need more intermodal hubs like the one in Kewdale.”

Newman said the economy will grow but there would be more growth in the non-resources-based industries.

Questions were asked about diesel fume pollution and health impact on the North Fremantle community and if health studies had been and would be done, and why pervious and the present governments had not made a start on the outer harbour when it would take so long to be built. The Premier assured the Perth Freight Link was not being built to support the sale of Fremantle Port.

Building an outer harbour would be the biggest infrastructure project ever done in this state Colin Barnett said, and that it would cost $ 4 billion. “It is a daunting project with enormous issues!”

Peter Newman said the PFL “Was the biggest threat I have seen to the future of Fremantle.” and former Councillor Anna Forma said it would be the end of North Fremantle and the area won’t survive this.

Barnett said he had no argument with building more public transport but what will we do with a million plus containers, and that he did not believe in doing nothing for ten years until an outer harbour might be built.

One of the last and most powerful words came from Kate Kelly of the Save Beeliar Wetlands who said there were significant defects in the environmental assessments of Roe 8 and they would take up a legal fight. “See you in court!”

I believe community information session like this one are very good and should happen more often, but I wonder why neither Barnett nor Newman went into details on the impact an outer harbour would have on Cockburn Sound.

Roel Loopers



Posted in city of fremantle, development, local government by freoview on August 25, 2015

It excites me to see so much development happening in Fremantle but it also very much disappoints me that so many of the new buildings are boring and not at all the heritage of the future we were promised by Fremantle Council.

The one thing we should blame Council for is that they did not tell us the truth and that they should not have promised us anything, because approval for large development is given by the State’s Development Assessment Panel(DAP) and the State Administrative Tribunal(SAT) and Fremantle Council can only recommend against or for an applications in a submission to the State agencies.

What happens at State level reminds me a bit of the time when there was public discussion about rapists who claimed that women did not really mean it when they said no to having sex, being raped. The DAP and SAT also tell us they know what is best for the community and they don’t care that we scream and yell no to bad and inappropriate development.

The State Government says that high-density infill is good for us, so we are supposed to relax, spread our legs and let them have their way with us, so they can brutally destroy the unique character of our older suburbs with ugly out of scale monstrosities. They rape our communities with bad infill!

Two local councillors sit on DAP and often are highly frustrated because there opinion, and that of the community they represent, is overruled by the State bureaucrats who have the majority on the panels and who pretend to know better what is good for our communities. They are pro-developers, not for good appropriate development. The 17-storey building approved on the former Subiaco markets site is a good example of DAP madness and ignoring local government.

The whole planning process has become a joke that erodes local government democracy, and it does not help either to have a Council that is hell-bend on development and willing to compromise on quality too fast. That is disaster in the making.

State Government needs to lessen their influence on local planning and allow the community to decide what they want their suburbs to look like. It is madness to enforce out of scale infill in character suburbs and destroy their unique ambience when there is plenty of space for higher density buildings on the periphery.

Godlin Barnett and his disciples need to stop ramming their development religion down our throat and listen instead to what we want, and that is great modern and exceptional development in the right areas.

Roel Loopers

ROEL FOR FREO! The truly independent

Stop press! This just from WA Today:

Applecross residents vow to continue fighting two-storey, 24-hour McDonald’s after mediation hearing at the State Administrative Tribunal failed.

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Posted in fremantle, fremantle ports, perth freight link by freoview on August 21, 2015

The Indian Ocean Gateway plan by the City of Kwinana is interesting but will unlikely get the support of companies interested in bidding for the 49 year lease of Fremantle Port.

Kwinana wants to link the lease of the port to building a new outer harbour at the Australian Maritime Complex within ten years. This would be a staged construction that would also cap container movement through Fremantle Port to 500,000 by 2025 and all container movement to go through the outer harbour by 2030.

Experts doubt there would be much interest in paying a very high price for running a smaller port after only ten years of the 49 year long lease. It would probably require the cash-strapped State Government to offer financial incentives to do so, but they are selling off the port because they are desperate for money so how can they make it more attractive for private operators to run the port.

A much better idea would have been to construct a new rail line to Fremantle Port away from the coast and use the existing line for passenger light rail to the new residential developments at South Beach, Port Coogee and the former South Fremantle power station. One also wonders if the proposed Perth Freight Link should have looked at a combination of road and rail instead of just wanting to cater for many more trucks on road.

I am amazed to hear the Premier say that building the outer harbour is too expensive. Fremantle Port will run out of capacity in the next 10-15 years, so what then?

Roel Loopers



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