(the shameful neglect of Western Australia’s oldest terrace housing)
John Dowson, Fremantles’ respected historical author also former deputy mayor of the City of Fremantle and president of the Fremantle Society, has written to the premier Colin Barnett concerning the neglect of Western Austalia’s oldest terraced houses. The document was sent via FICRA to the premier urging him to take some action towards saving this historic group of buildings.
I received a letter from the Department of Defence about the future of the historic Married Quarter Cottages near the Fremantle old traffic bridge and Army Museum. Defence wrote they are finalising the sale of the cottages to Defence Housing Australia (DHA) and once the sale is finalised and approved by parliament “renovations in a standard suitable for ADF personnel whilst protecting their heritage values” will be undertaken. The work will start in 2014 and DHA expects occupation of the heritage cottages by 2015.
It is good that the Fremantle Society pressure and that of Fremantle Labor MP Melissa Parke will finally see action to protect, renovate and make use of the cottages, but the time line is still very slow. Does it really have to take all of 2013 to finalise a contract between two government department?
We are still waiting for action by the Western Australian Department of Housing to get some action going on the neglected Warders Cottages in Henderson Street. It is a disgrace that there appears to be no urgency to resolve this. They are an eyesore in the centre of the city next to the popular Fremantle Markets and are falling apart. Why does it take a year to decide to hand them to the National Trust or the City of Fremantle when quick fix promises are made on about everything as prok barreling exercises before the election? The Colin Barnett coalition government obviously cares little for our heritage but has got plenty of money to waste on a sports stadium, Elizabeth Quay, developing beaches, etc.
Main Roads is running a series of Workshops which Fremantle Society reps alongwith other stakeholders are participating in. The following precis is supplied c/o Emma Powell a FICRA rep.
“Main Roads is currently seeking funding from the State Government to fund the replacement of the Fremantle Traffic Bridge. A submission has been sent to Treasury seeking funds of up to $210 million to replace the bridge with the option to provide an additional rail line, so that the freight can be improved to the Port. The project is currently partially funded and Main Roads is seeking funds over the next four year period to provide the certainty that the project to replace the bridge can commence. In order to maximise the long-term value to the community that this potential investment represents, Main Roads has embarked on a process to implement a Strategic Integrated Planning Framework to explore and assess opportunities that will support the preparation of a business case to reflect the benefits and costs associated with replacing the Fremantle Traffic Bridge. “
Next Workshop is 29 November.
Get in touch throught this blog if you can contribute.