March 24, 2017 6 Comments
I (like just about everyone else in Fremantle) got my first glimpse at a new proposal for the former Customs House this week (see below). I am not surprised that this is scheme that has already divided community opinion.
Some have even said that it shouldn’t even be considered but that is not how the way the planning system works, however. Instead the City of Fremantle is required to process any lawful planning application and send it to the Fremantle Council and the Joint Development Assessment Panel (DAP) for consideration. So just because we are putting it out for advertising doesn’t mean the City of Fremantle planning staff or the Fremantle Council or DAP will support it going ahead. This is just the legally required process.
Another part of the legally required process is that like all of the Fremantle Council members must keep an open mind and not determine a view until it is debated in the Fremantle Council chambers. So I will do that.
All that said, it is important to note a few facts:
First, the buildings in question only remaining heritage are their façades. The rest was gutted in the 1980s when facadism was sadly considered acceptable. The internal additions from this period can certainly be improved on.
Second, five stories in the West End is not something that complies with Fremantle Council policy for this important area and the Council recently rejected it on the Notre Dame site on High Street on this basis.
Third, the whole of the West End is also now on the State Heritage List adding another level of scrutiny and protection.
Finally, it is really important that you have your say too so please do that by going to:
A community information session will be held on 27 April from 5.30 pm – 6.00 pm in the City of Fremantle Reception Room.