Loving Place – North Fremantle

By Grant Revell an urban design activist living in North Fremantle who is committed to Loving Freo Places and says it is time for creative and integrated coastal development on Freo’s northern beaches.

What happens when a place like Leighton Beach is loved to death?

What happens when the urban planning and design efforts of North Fremantle ignore the liveable qualities of both old and modern cultural landscapes?

What happens to a loved place when the balance between the wishes of the local community and those of over enthusiastic developers are inequitable?

What just happens?

These are huge, difficult questions for a local community to grapple with.

The Leighton/Port Beach location. Credit Les Moyle

Especially when we seek a genuine balance between urban conservation, environmental
protection and liveable development. Where living heritage values are recognised as
contemporary attributes of a strong, healthy and sustainable place.

North Fremantle has been at the cross-roads for too long. Now, more than ever this community seeks support from all leaders to level the playing fields between the ‘hell-bent’
developmental wishes of a state government, those who privately own these special coastal lands, and the care and stewardship of the local community and region.

It is time for some clever and creative urban coastal design to integrate coastal recreation,
conservation and urban development. Not separate it. Where urban living is inspired by
coastal conservation in the every-day. Where the biodiversity of an urban street and local
park network, for example, is designed, valued and managed in much the same way as the resuscitated coastal dune system. Where commercial land uses also benefit from an
equitable conservation-lead urban living model.

A win-win for mixed-use, place-based, resilient community living.

As we all face the facts, we are left with a North Fremantle that is losing its living heritage.

Losing its beaches and local connectivity. It has become an unfortunate pinch-point for the
greater regional development of Fremantle and surrounds.

It is time for creative and integrated coastal development.

Our last chance, perhaps?

by Grant Revell is an urban design activist living in North Fremantle.


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