The stillness of sunrise is something most people miss out on, especially in summer when it happens just after 5 am. It is well worth getting up for though and even the joggers were taking photos at Point Walter this morning.
I needed a bit of a break from politics, amalgamation mess and Fremantle not doubling in size, so had a very early start of the day after a sleepless night.
The Giant Puppets are on their way back to France after an amazing success at the Perth International Arts Festival-PIAF that attracted hundreds of thousands of people and challenged the public transport in Perth.
Today thousands came to the Swan River foreshore to say goodbye to the huge marionettes. The sound of didgeridoos announced the progress of the barge along the river.
The Girl and the Diver were also accompanied by a large flotilla of boats to the East Street jetty in Fremantle, where the puppets were put on the back of trucks to be driven to the port.
The Kwinana Freeway Foreshore Management Plan put together by the W.A. State Government is concerned about future flooding of the freeway along the river due to climate change. Experts believe that sea levels will rise by 90 centimetres by 2110 according to a report in the Sunday Times.
It is suggested that to prevent freeway flooding to put a storm barrier in the Swan river behind Fremantle port, but I wonder where the surge of rising water would go then. Wouldn’t it flood areas in front of that water barrier and affect the Fremantle and North Fremantle foreshores?
I am always on the look out for new angles from which to take photos of Fremantle, so here some photos I took this morning from McCabe street that has been in the news lately because of a proposed planning scheme amendment that would allow highrise buildings near Stirling Highway on the edge of Mosman Park.
Member for Fremantle Simone McGurk drew a media crowd at noon today when all TV stations turned up to report about the accident at the railway bridge which was hit by a 14,000 ton vessel during last night’s storm.
As a consequence of it there are no trains between Fremantle and North Fremantle for possibly up to a week, according to a PTA spokesman.
Engineers were inspecting the damage from a pilot vessel while McGurk gave media interviews in which she stressed that an 2004 expert’s report had stated that the bridges are an unacceptable risk and in danger of collapsing should they get hit by a ship.
McGurk said the accident could have been a disaster and that early warning systems need to be installed so that trains get stopped immediately if there is interference with the bridge. This is one of the major routes to our State’s major port.
One has to wonder also about the stevedoring companies not suspending work last night when a severe storm warning had been issued by the weather bureau at midday. Will the MUA be happy that workers’ lives were put at risk so that the unloading of cargo would not be delayed? What if vehicles had been on the ramp of the RoRo vessel when it broke its moorings. Cars and people could have ended up in the water. The Harbour Master’s claim on ABC radio that the wind gust game unexpected seems uninformed at best.
I received this comment from Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt on the Traffic Bridge debacle:
Roel, I notice that there is an”assumption a new bridge would be built in the next 10 to 15 years” but given they now plan to spend around $ 20 million just fixing the old one I fear that is no longer the case.
An investment in a new combination road/rail bridge would have not only safety benefits but also enables double stacked freight trains and more trains to run during the day and as a result more freight on to rail. It’d be a great investment.
This photo somehow shows the essence of Fremantle; the heritage A and B sheds with the modern-and future heritage-Maritime Museum, the Indian Ocean, Swan river, and a young lady on a bike. All that around sunset pretty much sums up Freo’s lifestyle.
The uniqueness of place, which makes it so attractive to visitors and locals alike should never be underestimated. The brand Fremantle is a very strong one that needs to be nurtured, and can still be improved. I strongly believe that Freo has a very promising future ahead if we all promote the brand, instead of talking our city down.