Final post from this blog

This blog is no longer updated and remains as a public archive from former Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt.

Brad served as mayor from 2009 to 2021.

The ‘Walyalup Koort, looking back on the future of Freo‘ post from July 30, 2021 and ‘Future of Fremantle Traffic Bridge‘ from August 20, 2021 are the only posts not from Brad. These were posted from former Acting Mayor, Andrew Sullivan who served as acting mayor between February and October 2021.

Visit the Council, elections and voting page for information on the current City of Fremantle Elected Members.

Former Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt standing in front of a green timber wall.
Former Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt.

Future of Fremantle Traffic Bridge

Walyalup Koort, looking back on the future of Freo

With the Walyalup Civic Centre nearing completion, the new playground looking great and the public spaces around the newly renamed Walyalup Koort taking shape, it’s timely to go back and revisit the reasons why all of this was necessary in the first place.

The Fremantle Council recognised back in 2003 the need to deal with significant structural and maintenance threats associated with our old administration building.

The council under then Mayor Peter Tagliaferri moved a motion to investigate alternatives to what was described in the council report as a building which was “outdated and incurred considerable annual maintenance costs”. The report also stated, “a considerable amount of money would be required to upgrade and refurbish the building to current acceptable standards”.

The following year the council established a Civic Area Redevelopment Project to look at a precinct-wide development of Kings Square, including the City-owned buildings and the privately-owned Myer building.

In 2011 the council revisited these earlier plans with a fresh new approach to the Kings Square precinct to kick-start Fremantle’s much-needed revitalisation.

Around that time, Fremantle’s local economy was in decline and our inner-city population had stagnated. This was reinforced when Myer closed in 2013, one of many large format retailers forced to scale down operations in the face of the growing emphasis on online shopping and a decline in the dominance of department stores.

The anchor tenant in the Queensgate complex, Hoyts Cinemas, advised in 2012 that it would not renew its lease, and no other cinema chain could be found to take it over. The Queensgate building had a failing roof and air conditioners which required significant funds to repair. The City considered an option to renovate the cinemas into offices so they could be re-purposed for lease, but the cost of doing this was $14 million.

Action was needed to reverse Fremantle’s economic malaise and attract more people to live and work here. In 2010, council led by Mayor Brad Pettitt recognised that most of Perth’s leading developers had become disenfranchised with Fremantle as a place to invest.

The council sought to turn that negativity around by developing new economic development and planning strategies and promoting a new vision to the development industry. The rejuvenation of Kings Square was at the heart of the City’s plan to do just that.

Following an innovative ‘Citizens Jury’, the Kings Square Urban Design Strategy was adopted by the council in June 2012.  These community-inspired design guidelines, along with a comprehensive business plan, were then used as the brief for the Kings Square Architectural Design Competition.

The competition was promoted nationally and internationally in 2013 and conducted in accordance with the Australian Institute of Architects Competition Guidelines. It attracted more than 60 entries from around the world. The final winning design by Fremantle-based Kerry Hill Architects, along with other entries, formed part of a public exhibition in 2014.

The council then worked to further refine the design, put our finances in order to fund the project and entered into a commercial agreement with Sirona Capital to leverage their $220 million investment to redevelop old Myer and Queensgate sites as part of the broader renewal of Kings Square.

It’s a fact that Sirona would not have invested in the Kings Square Renewal project unless the City also committed to building new civic and community facilities in the square.   The council had to put skin in the game to kick-start the necessary investment in Fremantle.

The old administration building suffered from concrete cancer, had significant asbestos contamination and did not meet legal disability access requirements.

A report prepared in 2012 showed the City would have to spend $28 million on the old building just to meet the minimum required standards, and more than $50 million to properly refurbish it and add new extensions.

It was cheaper to knock it down and build a new, better building.

The improved energy efficiency and reduced maintenance costs on the new building will also deliver significant ongoing operational savings.

The original budget to construct the Walyalup Civic Centre was $41.3 million. That was increased to $42.6 million to allow for the installation of new fire protection measures and other improvements in the town hall that were not part of the original scope.

Despite the construction delays and other impacts due to COVID-19 and the collapse of the head contractor Pindan, the project remains on track to deliver on its original objectives.

From the beginning, the construction of the Walyalup Civic Centre has been funded using a combination of existing savings, asset sales and low-interest loans. Because of prudent financial planning it does not rely on increases in rates.

The 10-year financial plan adopted in 2015 showed the City would deliver long-term benefit from this essential, ‘once in a generation’ investment, and the knock-on developments it would generate.

We are already seeing the boost this project has given central Fremantle, with new investments in residential apartments, commercial properties and hospitality venues – Liv Apartments, Little Lane, M/27, The Social, the Manning Buildings, hArbour Fremantle, the Old Synagogue, Warders Hotel and Emily Taylor and more.

The increase in commercial and residential property developed as a result of Kings Square will generate more rate revenue for the City by significantly increasing the number of people living and working in the city centre, a core strategy in developing a ‘seven day per week’ economy.. 

Less than half the floor space of the Walyalup Civic Centre will be taken up by the operations of the City and its staff, with the majority of the building to be used for community facilities and commercial and retail spaces. Those commercial and retail spaces will provide an additional source of revenue for the City.

The Walyalup Civic Centre will be a spectacular building, with a stunning modern library, fully accessible toilets and change facilities, a state-of-the-art information and customer service centre, a wide range of community meeting rooms and gallery and exhibition spaces integrated with the town hall.

It will also be one of the most energy efficient buildings of its size in Australia and showcase a wide array of sustainability features that will also help reduce operational costs. But most importantly, it will bring people back to the civic heart of Fremantle and make it a safer, more attractive and vibrant place.

Now that we’re almost at the finish line, it easy to forget the years of community engagement, investigations, reports, consultations, debates and deliberations that took place before we gave the green light to one of the most significant projects in the city’s history. 

The City’s commitment to a new civic building and the renewal of Kings Square leveraged Sirona’s investment in new offices spaces that now accommodate more than 1700 state government employees – providing a huge boost to the local economy and acting as the catalyst for further private sector investment.

Without the Walyalup Civic Centre the revitalisation of central Fremantle we are currently witnessing simply would not be happening.

As of May 2021, the City has expended $38,311,347 on the Walyalup Civic Building. A new building contract has been awarded to complete the project after the collapse of original builder Pindan and the building is expected to be completed prior to the end of this year.


A final City of Fremantle blog from Brad

On Monday the 24th of May I will after a long wait officially be sworn in as a Member of the Legislative Council in the WA Parliament. It was suggested that before I officially start my new role,  I write a final blog as a way of handing it over the deputy-mayor Andrew Sullivan and team who will keep it going from here.

There is so much that could be said but perhaps the key thing I want to say is: thank you! I have had a wonderfully rewarding 11.5 years as mayor and 16 years on the Fremantle Council.

But it has only been such a positive experience because of the amazing support I have received from all across the community. The big changes that we made in Fremantle over the last decade – changes that I hope will put Fremantle in good sted for decades to come – were only possible because of an amazing team effort of people who loved Fremantle and who got behind our special city and were part of the conversation and necessary changes.

Thanks to all of you that have been part of this whether it be Amendment 49, Kings Square, One Day, Fremantle Youth Plaza or enhancing our heritage and arts and culture seen.  

Whether you were on our WRAP working group, or part of Mayors for Peace or just came along and had your say or supported the events and initiatives we were running. Your input has made the Fremantle Council a better council and Fremantle a better place.

It’s really not possible to list my highlights as mayor (without being a rather self-indulgent and perhaps boring) so it is good to have this blog certainly is a record of the highs and lows of the past decade and a bit. I hand it over with 3859 comments on my 1999 posts by almost 300k visitors. I hope future mayors build on it going forward as just one extra way of engaging with the community.

To finish I thought it would be fun share the thoughts of of Freo local Roy Lewisson who gave me a good-hearted roast at a small going away function I had recently. He said:

I would like to start off by briefly attempting to summarize Brad’s time as a Mayor, as a Councilor, as a politician and as a local government public servant.

With so many milestones, highlights, accolades and progressive, landmark turning points – this is no easy task.

There have been numerous outside-of-the-box initiatives utilizing a think globally act locally philosophy, which have been born out of symbiotic and collaborative relationships between Brad, the Councilors, the Council and the residents – let’s not forget the residents. In terms of local communities – let’s face it – Fremantle has always punched above its weight.

I recently came across this definition of the word ‘quality’ and it rang true of Brad’s time at the City of Fremantle – I quote

“Quality is never an accident; It is the result of high intention, sincere effort,  intelligent direction and  skillful execution; It represents the wise choice of many alternatives.”

Brad has become synonymous for achieving significant change within the Local Government arena, for weaving sustainability and innovation into new projects, policies and protocols and for standing by the strong environmental principles, in which he genuinely believes.

However tonight, I wish to focus on another side of Brad’s life, one which may be enlightening for many of you.

Within these green credentials, it should come as no surprise that Brad is also an adept and proficient bushwalker; a ‘quality’ bushwalker in fact.

When it comes to bushwalking – Brad is passionate, competent and feels very comfortable in natural environments.

Brad has walked extensively in Tasmania – particularly in the SW World Heritage Area– where he has successfully undertaking numerous walks of 10 – 14 days duration.  He has also walked in NZ, WA and is about to undertake the Larapinta Trial in Australia’s centre.

However, however, however  …… there is one aspect associated with this love of bushwalking to which Brad is a hopeless and dismal failure – and we are talking Dismal with a capital ‘Delta’ here – and that is his bushwalking gear. ‘Gear’ in this sense includes equipment, clothing and all round kit.

With all these accolades of Brad’s sharp ‘green’ strategic thinking – it may come as a shock to you – that when venturing out into these very wild and remote wilderness areas, Brad goes out of his way to purchase the cheapest, nastiest, most ill-fitting, not-suited-for-purpose, crappy, outdoor gear – he can possibly find.

When scrolling through the numerous photos I have of Brad bushwalking – I struggled to find photos of his multiple gear malfunctions – the broken buckles, the busted zippers, sleeping mats torn to shreds, raincoats that barely covered his navel … mainly because we were so busy fixing these problems, we didn’t have time to take photographs. However some photos of the latest boot saga may give you some insight.

Just before flying to Tasmania these soles were glued with Liquid Nails and held together with masking tape in an attempt to assist the glue to dry ………… whilst on the plane. There were also 2 x tek screws in each heel – which apparently aided stability ?

Brad had brought cable ties along ‘just-in-case’ the glue and tek screws didn’t hold. …………….. When the cable ties eventually came off –  Brad brought out the back-up shoes, the good old back up shoes – which double as camp footwear and typically are heavy duty outdoor sandals. However on this particular walk Brad had decided to bring along ……….. Tai Chi slippers.

If entering the WA State Upper House is considered moving up the political ranks – we can live in hope that it is accompanied by an upward change in attitude, towards quality bushwalking gear and clothing for our new MLC.

And finally – it is customary in a Kangaroo Court, to provide the convicted with the opportunity to rebuff the above facts.

I will now hand over to the convicted – the new Honourable Member of the Western Australian Legislative Council – Bradley Pettitt.       

While I contest much Roy’s roast of my camping gear (whose poor status is rather exaggerated), it was a nice light-hearted note to end an era on and as you can see from this photo there is nothing wrong with my hiking gear 🙂

I, of course, will still be around. I am planning on getting an electorate office in or around Fremantle as soon as possible and if there is any way I can help in the state parliament then please get in touch.

I am even planning a new blog which you will be able to find at

Finally, here are some photos over the years that people have shared with me. Thanks and stay well.

City unveils $37 million Fremantle Oval Masterplan

Nature Play WA CEO Griffin Longley, South Fremantle Football Club President Peter Casey, Fremantle Docker Mim Strom, South Fremantle’s Brock Higgins and Fremantle Football Club President Dale Alcock with Deputy Mayor Andrew Sullivan at Fremantle Oval.

The City of Fremantle has unveiled its Masterplan for the redevelopment of historic Fremantle Oval.

The $37 million plan was prepared in collaboration with South Fremantle Football Club, Fremantle Football Club and the WA Football Commission, with assistance from the state government’s Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries.

It includes new clubrooms and grandstands, improved spectator facilities, lighting upgrades and the realignment of the playing field to reconnect the oval to the heritage-listed Victoria Pavilion.

Other improvements include new grass banks, undercover seating terraces, a new events space, nature play area and improved connections with the rest of the city.

Deputy Mayor Andrew Sullivan said the redevelopment of the oval was one of the City of Fremantle’s top priorities. 

“Fremantle Oval has been the cherished home of local sport in Fremantle since 1894, and in recent years has also hosted AFLW matches and last year’s spectacularly successfully WAFL Grand Final,” Cr Sullivan said.

“But the reality is that the ground and its facilities for players, umpires, spectators and media no longer meet modern requirements, particularly for women’s sport.

“With our aim to make Fremantle Oval a place not just for football but an active community hub, the community amenities also need to be improved.

“The Masterplan recognises the heritage and strategic challenges of the site, including the neighbouring World Heritage listed Fremantle Prison, the proposed new Fremantle Police Headquarters on what is currently the Cappuccino Strip car park and the future planning needs of the Fremantle Hospital site.

“Another key aspect of the plan is improving pedestrian and general access to the oval, to help with connectivity, activation and safety andopen up the oval as major new parklands and community facilities strategically located between the city centre and Fremantle Hospital.

“Once complete Fremantle Oval will set a new benchmark for state football facilities, and stand as an integrated part of city life for a range of events and activities that everyone can enjoy.”

South Fremantle Football Club Chief Executive Officer Cameron Britt said the Fremantle Oval Redevelopment Masterplan aligned strongly with the planning and strategies of both the AFL and the WA Football Commission.

“Currently only one of the eight WAFL venues meet the minimum standards for AFL category 4 facilities, leaving WA in a poor position when compared to other states, and around 70 per cent of football venues across WA don’t adequately cater for female participants,” Mr Britt said.

“Upgrading our clubrooms and the ground will deliver one of Perth’s best WAFL facilities which could cater for AFLW games, WAFL and WAFLW matches and AFL pre-season games, including day and night TV broadcasting.

“Everyone loved the atmosphere at the WAFL Grand Final at Fremantle Oval last year, and implementing this Masterplan will develop a destination that integrates with the historic city around it and deliver a great gameday experience for fans and the broader Fremantle community.

“This project is about more than just football. It’s about continuing Fremantle Oval’s legacy, and revitalising an important part of our city’s heart and soul.”

Fremantle Football Club President Dale Alcock said the club was excited to work with the City of Fremantle, South Fremantle Football Club and the Fremantle community on potential development opportunities at Fremantle Oval. 

“Fremantle is our club’s spiritual home, and we welcome the prospect of enhancing the facilities for our players and fans,” Mr Alcock said.

“The development project will allow the club to have a presence in our heartland while enabling our AFL Women’s team to continue playing at the ground in front of the next generation of Fremantle fans.  It will also provide more opportunities for AFL men’s pre-season fixtures to be scheduled at the ground. 

“We love the atmosphere at Fremantle Oval and we are excited to enhance the fan experience and ensure the standard of facilities meets the expanding requirements of the AFLW league as it continues to grow.

Mr Alcock said while the Dockers remained committed to keeping their head office and administration/training facility at Cockburn, the development would allow the club to explore a more permanent presence at Fremantle Oval, including potential community, cultural and education facility opportunities.

A vibrant Freo Oval precinct would not only enhance the Dockers’ football programs, but also the community and fan initiatives of the club, he said.

The Fremantle Oval Redevelopment Masterplan will be considered by Fremantle Council’s Finance, Policy, Operations and Legislation Committee on Wednesday.

If adopted by the council, the project partners will seek financial assistance from the state and federal governments to contribute to the project.

The total cost of implementing the Fremantle Oval Redevelopment Masterplan is estimated at approximately $36.8 million, with four independent stages.

Optional items that are costed separately include an additional floor in the South Fremantle clubrooms for the Fremantle Football Club at $4.2 million, and an underground car park at $2.7 million.

The former headquarters of the Fremantle Football Club, which is currently being used by the City of Fremantle as a temporary administration centre, is identified as a future redevelopment

South Terrace/Suffolk Street Hotel Development out for consultation

Good to see the development application for 65 South Tce (corner of South Terrace and Suffolk Street) now out for public consultation.

The plan is for a six-storey, 100 room hotel building with two office tenancies, one office / shop tenancy and associated car parking

The project is by  Fremantle-based Yolk Property Group and has been designed by Fremantle architects Harris-Jenkins.

It’s value of over $20 million means that it be presented to the Western Australian Planning Committee rather than the City of Fremantle for approval. Community feedback is invited here:

This site has sat empty for about 30 years. For those of you with really long memories you might remember this service station that was demolished in the late 1980s I’m guessing, and the site has been vacant every since.

It would be great to see something finally happened on this site and done well it will help link the Cappuccino Strip to the Wray Ave precinct.

Please have your say.

Richard Lane honours Richard Lane

Richard Lane’s partner Cathy and daughter Penny in the newly named ‘Richard Lane’.

The laneway behind Fremantle’s historic Artillery Drill Hall has been officially named ‘Richard Lane’ in honour of one of the city’s most beloved musicians.

Richard Lane, a talented guitarist, keyboard player and vocalist and founding member of much-loved Perth garage band The Stems, passed away in May last year.

The Drill Hall is now the popular live music venue Freo.Social, but was previously the home of the iconic Fly-By-Night Musicians Club and was used by Richard as a venue for his music school Penny Lane’s Music Workshop for a couple of years.

A proposal to name the Drill Hall laneway ‘Richard Lane’ was supported by Fremantle Council in August last year.

The name became official when the street sign was unveiled during an intimate ceremony with family and closest friends this afternoon.

Richard Lane’s partner Cathy Gavranich said he would have been honoured by this tribute.

“We ran Penny Lane’s Music Workshop out of the Drill Hall for about two and half years and we did two Fremantle Festival parades where we had hundreds of kids out in this laneway all dressed up and playing music together,” she said.

“Everyone had Sgt. Pepper costumes on one year and another year we were adorned with rainbows. The building was filled with and surrounded by happy musical children with Richard inspiring and leading them all; he was King of the Kids.

“Hundreds of local children and their families have fond memories of Richard in this laneway, so that’s pretty special and makes this the perfect place to honour our shared precious memories of him.

“I honestly don’t think Richard realised how well loved he was or the amount of respect and high regard that he held within the community.

“He was selfless, he was always doing so much for so many people without any want of recognition. It was his nature to be helpful however and wherever he could. He gave so much of his time and energy to helping others launch their careers and realise their dreams. He was kind and humble and he always put others first. He was so loved.”

Richard Lane co-founded The Stems in 1983. The four-piece played its first gig at Perth’s Old Civic Theatre supporting The Saints and The Triffids.

The Stems released their seminal album At First Sight, Violets Are Blue in 1987 but due to irreconcilable differences disbanded shortly after. The band reformed in 2003 and in 2007 released a second album, Heads Up.

In 1989 Richard founded The Chevelles before moving on to The Rosebuds, as well as contributing to other bands such as The Rosebud Generation, The Morris Lane Project, The On and Ons, The Painkillers and the Lazy Shavers.

In the 1990s he founded and ran a Perth-based record label, Idaho Records, oversaw a venue booking agency, worked for X-Press Magazine and performed with a myriad of other musicians, all the while tending to his own career as a renowned recording artist, songwriter and musician.

July 2013 Two Lanes found themselves in Lane Lane in Broken Hill, NSW.

Fremantle Oval HQ up for lease

The City of Fremantle is seeking expressions of interest from community groups and commercial operators to determine if there are suitable opportunities to make the City’s current administration building at Fremantle Oval available for lease.

The building was the headquarters of the Fremantle Football Club for more than 20 years before the club moved out in 2017.

It has since been used by the City of Fremantle as a temporary home while the new Walyalup Civic Centre is under construction in Kings Square.

With the Walyalup Civic Centre nearing completion, City of Fremantle Director of City Business Glen Dougall said there was now the opportunity to consider making the Fremantle Oval building available for lease.

“The building at Fremantle Oval was extensively renovated by the City after the Dockers moved out in 2017,” Mr Dougall said.

“The gym and changerooms were transformed into a library, former coach Ross Lyon’s office is now a meeting room and the swimming pool on the ground floor was covered over to create a large open-plan office space.

“Before we decide on the most suitable use for the building, we would like to explore who might be interested in an opportunity like this if it was to become available.

“We’re also planning for a major redevelopment of the Fremantle Oval precinct within the next ten years, so we’re pitching this as a shorter-term opportunity.

“A lease term of five years would be ideal, but anything up to ten years will be considered.”

The Fremantle Oval building has a floor area of approximately 2322 square metres across two levels. The ground floor has approximately 1334 square metres, with an additional 900 square metres available on the first floor. 

Suitable proponents may wish to lease the entire building, or it can be divided into at least three separate tenancies.

The property also includes a secure gated parking lot capable of accommodating more than 45 car bays.

For more information and to submit an expression of interest visit the City of Fremantle’s Tenders website.

First Day Back in the Office

Today I had my first day back in the office after the election and it was good to be back although it is a bit weird not knowing how long for.

I was hoping to know by now the result of the state election, but it looks like this may be a while yet due to the closeness of the vote for the 6th South Metro Legislative Council spot. Hopefully we will know by the end of month.

How the vote is arrived at is a long and complicated story so I will leave it to ABC election expert Antony Green to explain via his blog and excerpt below.

South Metropolitan Region

Labor will elect four MLCs, the Liberals one with the final seat in my view to be won by the Greens. This differs from the current ABC calculator output for South Metroplitan Region. At what the calculator calls Count 26, the Greens trail Labor very narrowly 0.4646 quotas to 0.4706. The calculator excludes the Greens and Labor’s fifth candidate goes on to win the final seat.

However, the calculator does not take any account of BTL votes. Once they are included, Labor’s vote will fall slightly and the Green vote rise. At the 2017 election, only 2.35% of Labor’s votes were BTL compared to 11.13% for the Greens. At the start of the South Metropolitan count, Labor has 4.4706 quotas to the Green’s 0.4500. Modelling percentages for all parties based on 2017 ATL/BTL rates, I estimate that a better starting count would be Labor 4.4002 and the Greens 0.4858. That means at the equivalent of Count 26, the Greens should lead Labor and go on to win the final seat on Labor preferences. That may be reversed if Labor attracts a lot of below the line votes, but I think the Green projected lead will be enough.

The Labor MLCs re-elected are Sue Ellery and Kate Doust, joined by newcomers Klara Andric and Stephen Pratt. Sitting MLC Pierre Yang moved to and was elected to represent North Metropolitan Region. Liberal MLC Nick Goiran is re-elected while fellow MLC Simon O’Brien did not re-contest after losing Liberal pre-election.

Liberal Democrat MLC Aaron Stonehouse was defeated, his party’s vote declining from 3.9% to 0.9% after losing the advantage of being to the left of the Liberal Party on the ballot paper. He will be replaced by the Green’s Brad Pettitt, or if all my predictions prove to be wrong, by a fifth Labor MLC in Victoria Helps.

Have your say on Kings Square renaming shortlist

Fremantle Councillor Hannah Fitzhardinge (centre) with Fr Patrick King from St John’s Church and Fremantle Chamber of Commerce CEO Danica Quinlan, who are both members of the Kings Square stakeholder group. 

The City of Fremantle has released a shortlist of options for the possible renaming of Kings Square.

The City began exploring the possibility of renaming Kings Square last year by inviting the public to put forward their suggestions.

The process attracted 194 submissions which included 128 suggestions for a new name, five suggestions for a dual name and 108 general comments about renaming the square or keeping the current name.

Fremantle councillor Hannah Fitzhardinge, who represents the council on the Kings Square stakeholder group, said the suggestions were assessed against the naming criteria adopted by the council, provided to Landgate for preliminary comments and considered by the stakeholder group before finalising the shortlist.

“The civic heart of Fremantle is undergoing a massive transformation through the Kings Square Renewal Project, so we thought it was timely to explore what the community thought was the best name,” Cr Fitzhardinge said.

“The initial consultation attracted a lot of interest and we received some really great suggestions that we’ve now narrowed down to the shortlist of five options.

“One of those is to retain the original name of Kings Square; three are new Whadjuk Nyoongar names – Midgegooroo Square, Walyalup Koort and Boya Karla; and one is to have a dual name combining a Nyoongar name with Kings Square. The use of ‘Koort’ or ‘Gnalla’ as a suffix is also being considered.

“The issue of acknowledging Fremantle’s Italian heritage also came up through the process, so we’ve included an option to use Piazza rather than Square to refer to the space. There are also potentially other areas around the city that we could consider for an Italian name.

“We really want to hear what people have to say about their preferred name before a final recommendation is presented for council consideration later this year.”       

Except for a brief period in the 1980s the name Kings Square has remained unchanged since Surveyor-General John Septimus Roe drew up the original town plan for Fremantle in 1833.  The name refers to King William IV of England who reigned from 1830-37.

Midgegooroo was the leader of the Whadjuk clan that occupied and owned the area known as Beeliar, which included Fremantle. He was executed by firing squad on 22 May 1833 for the alleged killing of colonial settlers.

Walyalup is the traditional Whadjuk Nyoongar name for the geographic location of Fremantle. Koort is the Nyoongar word for heart, so Walyalup Koort means ‘a place in the heart of Fremantle’.

Boya Karla means ‘rock fire’, and is inspired by the public artwork proposed for Kings Square that incorporates a ring of standing stones representing WA’s 14 Nyoongar clans surrounding a ceremonial fire vessel.  

For more information on the five shortlisted options and to have your say visit the City of Fremantle’s My Say Freo website:

The City of Fremantle is undertaking the $270 million Kings Square Renewal Project in partnership with Sirona Capital.

It includes the redevelopment of the old Myer and Queensgate sites to create offices for state government departments and the revolutionary FOMO food, art and retail concept, the construction of the City of Fremantle’s new administration centre and library and the rejuvenation of the public spaces around the square.

In February 2020 Fremantle Council voted to name the City’s new administration building the Walyalup Civic Centre.

For more information on the Kings Square Renewal Project visit the Kings Square Fremantle website, or watch this video.