Vote for Freo in WA Landscape Architecture Awards

Two City of Fremantle projects are in the running for the People’s Choice award at the 2018 WA Landscape Architecture Awards.

The Tuckfield Oval parkland at Cantonment Hill and the City of Fremantle’s Urban Forest Plan have both been nominated for the award hosted by the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects.

To vote for either project visit the WA Landscape Architecture Awards People’s Choice Facebook page and like the project. One Facebook like equals one vote, and the project with the most votes wins.

Voting is now open and closes on Monday 16 July, with the winners to be announced at the awards event on 20 July.

Cantonment Hill has also been nominated in the Cultural Heritage category, while the Urban Forest Plan is nominated in the Landscape Planning category.

The Cantonment Hill parkland, designed by North Fremantle-based landscape architects and environmental consultants Ecoscape, was completed in October 2017.

It boasts spectacular views over the Swan River and features a nature-based playground, barbecues and picnic areas, improved footpaths and lighting and landscaping with water wise native plants.

The parkland was designed following extensive consultation with Department of Aboriginal Affairs, Whadjuk traditional owners and local community groups and was supported through a $2.2m grant from Lotterywest.

The Urban Forest Plan, also developed by Ecoscape and TPG Placematch, aims to plant 11,000 new trees across the City of Fremantle to progressively increase tree canopy cover from 13 to 20 per cent to tackle climate change and reduce the urban heat island effect.

The detailed Urban Forest Plan was adopted in July 2017 and sets out a coordinated and targeted tree planting plan for the next 10 years as part of the Greening Fremantle Strategy 2020.

It includes tree-planting initiatives like the recent Greening Samson program, community tree-planting days and the City’s verge garden assistance scheme.

For more information visit the Urban Forest Plan page on our website.

This Week “Mayor (not) in the Square” at White Gum Valley’s Valley Park

The weather is stunning so come down to White Gum Valley’s Valley Park for “Mayor (not) in the Square”.

Council members and I will be there to answer question and deal with queries from 11am on Wednesday the 11th.

Cnr of Nanine and Watkins Streets, WGV.

Purposeful PaperArt Exhibition:  by Really Useful Recyclers

Pop this exhibition in your diary. The ‘Purposeful PaperArt’, will take place during Plastic Free July, from Saturday 21st to Saturday 28th July at Bitches Brew Artspace in Fremantle

Courtney and Josh, two young guys with autism create stunning art out of recycled and unused newspapers collected in the community.

With a vision for a meaningful, productive life when their high school years ended, Deb Flintoff and Del Smith created a small business enterprise for their now young adult autistic sons Joshua (21) and Courtney (22).

Inspired by Josh and Courtney’s two big passions, Disney Pixar’s Wall-e the Recycling Robot and Thomas the Tank Engine who is really useful, the Really Useful Recycler enterprise continues to provide them with an invaluable sense of purpose, as well as valued roles in their local and wider community, by catering to their specific abilities, interests and range of skills.

Each week Josh Courtney collect unsold and used newspapers from local business and recycle them into an array of beautiful and ever evolving range of sustainable Paper Art products, including WallArt, jewellery and decorative mirrors.  Vintage comics and lifestyle magazines are now also being recycled as the range of products diversifies.

“Recycling in the community 1 newspaper at a time”, has enabled Josh and Courtney to live the productive, useful, environmentally conscious and meaningful lives, their parents always envisioned.

With the help of Josh and Courtney’s very dedicated support teams, Deb and Del plan, create, co-ordinate, facilitate and manage every aspect of the enterprise in order to ensure it continues to evolve, remains sustainable and most importantly allows Josh and Courtney to continue doing what they enjoy…recycling and being useful.



Debating development, change and gentrification in Freo

A good follow up piece by Nathan Hondros in WA Today on Freo’s future probably wraps up what was an interesting and worthwhile discussion on development, change and gentrification in Freo over the past week.

It all started with Nathan Hondros writing the controversial “Fremantle I love you but you have to change”

Fearing Nathan wasn’t aware that change was underway I posted my blog post Fremantle, we have a problem? Yes and the fix is underway

ABC Radio presenter Gillian O’Shaughnessy then responded to Nathan with a timely piece called

The problem isn’t Freo, it’s you reminding us that what makes Freo special is the non-shiny bits. As she said “Where the Nathans see “run down and worn out”, I see charming and sassy. Even a little louche in parts”

Today, after speaking with locals including Adin Lang and Roel Loopers as well as Matthew McNeilly, Nathan Hondros wrote his response to the debate:

Beyond the cult of Freo: The $1.3b set to change our port city forever

It was a debate worth having and if we learnt nothing else it’s that this town has some wonderfully passionate supporters, all who love it – even if they can’t agree on how it should change.


NAIDOC Week in Freo Kicks off this Sunday



Fremantle, we have a problem? Yes and the fix is underway

Yesterday Nathan Hondros wrote an opinion piece in WA Today called Fremantle, we have a problem. I love you but you have to change

Here is the response I sent to Nathan:

G’day Nathan

In your article about Fremantle published this morning you asked this key question – ‘The entire city feels like it’s crying out for private investment, so why isn’t it happening?’

The answer is – it is happening.

There is currently more than $1.3 billion worth of public and private development either underway or in the pipeline in Fremantle – more than at any time in Freo’s history.

The $270 million (not $220 million) Kings Square Renewal project is a public/private partnership, with the City of Fremantle contributing $50 million to construct our new administration building and library and Sirona Capital contributing $220 million for the FOMO retail development – which has been shortlisted for an international architecture award – state government office space and the redevelopment of the Queensgate carpark.

This project has been the catalyst for an unprecedented level of private investment in the run-down East End of central Fremantle.

There’s the recently completed Heirloom apartments in the old Dalgety Woolstores, the Liv Apartments on Queen Victoria Street, which are nearing completion, the Little Lane development in the old Westgate Mall, Ancora Apartments on Point Street, M/27 near Fremantle Park, and Established and The Social apartments in the West End.

As a result of all these new apartments we expect Fremantle’s city centre population to grow by 65 per cent over the next ten years, which will in turn mean many more customers for local businesses.

But your suggested solution that ‘Fremantle should be for living and Perth should be for working’ is perhaps the most troubling aspect of your article.

Cities work best when they are places that people can live and work and play in – not just one or the other.

Fremantle has always been Perth’s second city and we are not just increasing residents but also jobs and visitors.

In addition to the 1500 new jobs in the Kings Square office components, the City of Fremantle is also enabling investment in new retail, tourism and hospitality venues.

For example, the City has recently approved the redevelopment of the Old Courthouse and Police Station into a hotel, restaurant and shops, the conversion of a row of the Warders’ Cottages into a boutique hotel and an upgrade of the historic Manning Buildings on the High St Mall, while the developers behind the planned Doubletree by Hilton hotel have recently sought approval to bring the project forward.

In total, all of this investment is delivering more than 1600 new dwellings, 727 new hotel rooms, almost 39,000m2 of retail and hospitality space and 44,000m2 of office space.

And all of this has been made possible because of the decisions of “the loopy, socialist Fremantle council.”

While you might think Fremantle is ‘sad’, it appears the majority of people disagree with you.

Research by Tourism WA last year found that Fremantle was Perth’s most popular entertainment precinct across all age groups. The year before Fremantle was rated as one of the top ten cities in the world to visit by Lonely Planet.

And a final comment on parking. There’s plenty of parking in Fremantle – over 4000 bays. People just need to be prepared walk a short distance to get to where they’re going.

And if many of those bays are full – surely that’s a sign that Fremantle is a popular place that people like to visit.

It’s true that Fremantle – like all cities – has its challenges, and we are working hard to address them.

But those challenges don’t stop Freo from being a great place live and a great place to visit.

Some links FYI:

FOMO architecture award nomination –

Freo Perth’s favourite entertainment precinct –

Liv Apartments –

Little Lane –

Ancora  –

M/27 –

The Social –

Old Courthouse –

Warders Cottages Hotel –

Manning Buildings –


A few of the highlights from the latest Freo Council meeting…

A few of the highlights from the latest Freo Council meeting…