So what can Council do about Light Rail?

light rail freoThis month’s Special Projects Committee progressed changes for Hilton local centre along South Street and in doing so, increased the viability of light rail.

South Street was identified as a desirable light rail route in the future to better connect Murdoch train station, the university and hospitals to Fremantle with fast efficient public transport. Despite this already having a high frequency bus route, the state government (and some detractors) don’t think there is enough patronage growth or activity along this road to justify planning for light rail.

As always, it’s a chicken and egg matter.

Which comes first? The light rail, or the development? Continue reading

SPC stands for Transparency

Council Chamber- where everyone is welcome

Council Chamber- where everyone is welcome

Transparency and accountability of the Council is a high priority for many people in Fremantle. This was reflected in the most recent community perception survey.

Genuine community engagement has been something I hold very dear and work hard to ensure and facilitate.

About 18 months ago, I became the Chair of a new Council committee formed to do just that. The Special Projects Committee (SPC) was established so that crucial informal discussions – that had previously been held behind closed doors – became open to the public. Continue reading

Perth Freight Link – motion

A motion on the Perth Freight Link passed unanimuosly at the Strategic and General Services Committee Meeting 17 June 2015 (page 69-70 of the minutes)

That Council:

  1. Rejects the State Government proposals for Sections 1 and 2 of the Perth Freight Link as there is insufficient planning and analysis of the many serious and negative implications associated with these proposals, and as it contradicts the planning that has been in place for many years.

Continue reading

See the Urban Forest for the Trees

Booyeembarra Park - by Garry Gillard

Booyeembarra Park – by Garry Gillard

See the urban forest for the trees

It has been expressed many times within the local media, in community debates, in the Freo 2029 community visioning process and in café conversation: Fremantle people love our beautiful parks, our pristine beaches, the majestic trees and soft landscapes. They breathe life into our city and joy into our lives and we want to keep and care for what we have and add more green spaces where and when we can. Continue reading

Transformational Moves for Freo

COF_Freo_2029_Transformational_Moves-2-1Fremantle Council launched the “Freo 2029 Transformational Moves” report this week.

This is a document years in the collective making. It compiles all the major plans and projects, vision and ideas that have been proposed and developed by community members, state governments, the Port, the PTA and the Council. It brings them all together into a coherent vision for where we are heading as a city and reflects what the people of Fremantle have expressed they want to see through various consultation processes held over recent years. Continue reading

A contemporary role for Traditional Owners in Freo

Last week the Fremantle Council adopted its One Planet Living Strategy – a comprehensive plan for how the City of Fremantle plans to improve the quality of live while simultaneously reducing our use of the earth’s resources. (Read all the detail on pages 89 – 109 here.)

I added a specific goal to the “Culture and Heritage” principle that is close to my heart, that we:

“Establish policy and procedures to adopt best practice engagement and consultation with Traditional Owners by October 2015.”

Len Collard opened the new council in October 2013 - the first time a Traditional Owner has been invited to do so.

Len Collard opened the new Council in October 2013 – the first time a Traditional Owner has been invited to do so.

In 2011 Council endorsed terms of reference for an Aboriginal Working Group that had four aims,

1. Representation of Aboriginal people on Council.

– Work with council to pass on knowledge which may influence the decision making function of the Elected Members.
– To investigate and recommend a formal mechanism to ensure ongoing Aboriginal representation on Council Continue reading

Why I’m Fighting for Freo

The proposed amalgamation between Melville, East Fremantle and Fremantle (plus part of Canning!) has prompted me to think about the practical and tangible differences that such a change to our local governance might make.

It is not simply because Freo is special and has a ‘unique vibe’ that we want to protect, there are potential changes to planning, budget and governance structures that may greatly concern some Freo community members because our values are different to Melville’s. Continue reading

skating: the issue

The proposed skate park or ‘youth plaza’ on the Esplanade has been a complex and contentious local issue that I have spent much time considering and discussing over the last few months, with numerous people, in order to come to my own position. I have attempted to explain that position here.

I have found this issue challenging as I support a youth facility on the Esplanade, in a safe and open space that is well used and therefore safe, inclusive and welcoming. However, I also love the open space and quiet parkland that the Esplanade provides so close to the city centre. However, this issue should be considered in isolation, but in the broader context of the whole city and our contemporary issues we face. Continue reading

Tired of Matthew

Matthew Hanssen, the Liberal candidate for Fremantle, started his speech at the freo debate last night with a whinge about how ‘tired’ he is of Fremantle – citing various complaints for which he lays blame entirely with the council. This seems to be the sole platform of his campaign.

However, he entirely fails to suggest anything he has done, or would do to address these issues that he raises.

He fails to mention anything that his party’s government has done, or would do to address these concerns. Continue reading