PART 2 of Fremantle deputy mayor Andrew Sullivan’s look back (and forward) at the new Walyalup Square and civic centre and what it means for Fremantle.
WE are already seeing the boost this project has given central Fremantle, with new investments in residential apartments, commercial properties and hospitality venues – Liv Apartments, Little Lane, M/27, The Social, the Manning Buildings, hArbour Fremantle, the Old Synagogue and more.
The increase in commercial and residential property developed as a result of Kings Square will generate more rate revenue for the city by significantly increasing the number of people living and working in the city centre, a core strategy in developing a seven day per week economy.
Less than half the floor space of the Walyalup Civic Centre will be taken up by city staff, with the majority of the building for community facilities and commercial and retail spaces. Those commercial and retail spaces will provide an additional source of revenue for the city.
The Walyalup Civic Centre will be a spectacular building, with a stunning modern library, fully accessible toilets and change facilities, a state-of-the-art information and customer service centre, a wide range of community meeting rooms and gallery and exhibition spaces integrated with the Town Hall.
It will also be one of the most energy efficient buildings of its size in Australia and showcase a wide array of sustainability features reducing operational costs. But most importantly, it will bring people back to the civic heart of Fremantle and make it a safer, more attractive and vibrant place.
Now we’re almost at the finish line, it’s easy to forget the years of community engagement, investigations, reports, consultations, debates and deliberations before we gave the green light to one of the most significant projects in the city’s history.
The city’s commitment to a new civic building and the renewal of Kings Square leveraged Sirona’s investment in new offices spaces that now accommodate more than 1700 state government employees – providing a huge boost to the local economy and acting as the catalyst for further private sector investment.
Without the Walyalup Civic Centre the revitalisation of central Fremantle we are currently witnessing simply would not be happening.
As of May 2021, the City has expended $38,311,347 on the Walyalup Civic Building. A new building contract has been awarded to complete the project after the collapse of original builder Pindan and the building is expected to be completed prior to the end of this year.