New club facilities are being designed for the yet-to-be-established Fremantle Park Association for the Tennis, Bowling, and Workers Clubs in historic Fremantle Park. The City of Fremantle in late 2016 awarded the first stage of the architectural contract for the development to SITE.
One old concept plan of several, including an underground parking component - which will NOT be implemented. The new building will have street access from Ellen St.
Convenor and Tennis Club president, Lawrence Apps (right) with Don Whittington, president of the Workers Club, explaining the current state of planning to members of the clubs, 26 June 2016. Where Don's left hand is pointing is one of the two possible sites - but the clubs prefer the site one unit to the right of that.
Fremantle Park (1879) is the home of the Fremantle Lawn Tennis Club (1895) and Fremantle Bowling Club (1896). The facilities of both clubs at Fremantle Park are in need of redevelopment and repair to meet the needs of their respective games and their members.
In 2011, consultant GHD completed a needs assessment and feasibility study on the amalgamation of the two clubs and a concept plan for a shared facility. The needs assessment and feasibility study was funded by the City of Fremantle, Department of Sport and Recreation (DSR) and both clubs.
The study found several advantages for both clubs; however, due to the redevelopment of the Fremantle Leisure Centre, the City was unable to support another major grant application.
Both clubs then looked to other potential partners for financial backing, with the Fremantle Workers Club (FWC) expressing an interest. The working group reformed to include members from FWC and approached the City in 2013 to apply for Community Sporting and Recreation Facilities funding (CSRFF).
Since hearing about the possibility of a new facility at Fremantle Park, other sport and recreation clubs have expressed interest in sharing this facility. Many of the clubs are not in a situation to contribute financially to the construction, but could be considered as possible user groups.
The development of the new shared single club facility will benefit the multiple parties that utilise the existing facilities, as well as creating a space where local residents feel welcome and increase the availability of community use space for hire.
The State Government has expressed its tangible support for the proposed and long-awaited sport and community centre by allocating $400,000 to the project.
This pushes the funds available for the multipurpose facility over the $4 million mark, with the City of Fremantle contributing $1.85 million and the Fremantle Workers Social and Leisure Club also contributing $1.85 million.
The City’s successful application for government support came via the Community Sport and Recreation Facility Fund administered by the Department of Sport and Recreation. The project was eligible for government funding through this scheme because of the involvement of the tennis and bowling clubs.
The three clubs established a joint working party to drive the project, and members of the working party devoted many hours of work over several years to facilitate the process. This included working with Mayor Brad Pettitt, City officers, Department of Sport and Recreation officers, Lotterywest officers and external consultants.
The clubs are extremely grateful to the Mayor, the City Council and officers Marisa Spaziani, Beverley Bone and Erinn Litchfield for their guidance and support.
The City has already appointed Sam Bryce as project manager to steer the planning and building of the facility, and the joint working party will now be meeting with Sam to get the project underway.
Working Party Convener
6 March 2016
Good news, with $400k promised by the State Government - as reported by the Fremantle Herald, 4 March.
State Government promises $400k - as reported by the Fremantle Herald, 4 March 2016: 3.
Fremantle City Council again highlighted the strategic importance of the proposed shared facility on Fremantle Park (Workers Club, Tennis Club, Bowls Club) by confirming at the Council meeting of Wednesday 23 September 2015 the project’s priority for a State Government Community Sporting and Recreation Facilities Fund grant. Applications for CSRFF grants close this month.
This followed the Council’s decision last month to increase its funding for the project from $1.5 million to $1.85 million to match the contribution of the Fremantle Workers Social and Leisure Club. With the assistance of grants from CSRFF and Lotterywest, it is now anticipated that the shortfall in funding indentified by the Department of Sport and Recreation in last year’s CSRFF application has been addressed.
Councillors at both meetings spoke strongly in favour of the proposed facility. They acknowledged that the run-down tennis and bowls buildings had to be replaced but also stressed the need for a first-class community facility on Fremantle Park.
Fremantle City Council to contribute
As reported from the Council meeting of August 2014: 'The City has committed to contributing $1.5m in its forward financial plan to the construction of this facility ...'
Workers Club commits
The new Fremantle Park clubrooms moved another step closer when the Fremantle Workers Club at its AGM on Saturday 25 October 2014 resolved to contribute to the cost. The money will come from the sale of its existing building at 9 Henry St, the sale having been agreed to at a Special General Meeting of the FWSLC the previous Saturday. It is expected the sale will be settled in January 2015.
It was hoped that the Dept of Sport and Recreation would make a grant sufficient to cover the other third of the cost of the facility. Don Whittington, President of the Workers Club, to his members, 23 April 2015:
I regret to inform you that future plans for the proposed shared facility on Fremantle Park will be delayed for up to a year. Unfortunately the City of Fremantle was unsuccessful in its 2015 application for funding from the State Government (via the Department of Sport and Recreation). In fact a majority of the successful grants were awarded to projects outside the metropolitan area.
The City of Fremantle had employed a specialist consultant to develop the business case for the project. We had all thought that the case he made was convincing and are surprised by the news. Mayor Brad Pettitt has told us that he and City officers are also extremely puzzled as to why the application was not successful. He has assured us that the City will reapply in the second half of this year.
The above image is taken from a presentation given by the President of the Fremantle Workers Club, Don Whittington, at the Club on 31 May 2014. The full PDF is available here: Future Directions (3Mb).
From the Fremantle City Council website, September 2014:
Council has agreed to fund the production of a business plan to investigate the development of shared club facilities at Fremantle Park.
Fremantle Park is currently home of the Fremantle Lawn Tennis Club and the Fremantle Bowling Club with the Fremantle Workers Club (FWC) expressing an interest in relocating if new facilities were developed.
Consultants GHD have developed two concept plans at the City's request. The first option provides a concept plan that meets the requirements for the three clubs to amalgamate into a purpose-built shared use centre. The second incorporates additional underground parking. There is a significant cost difference between the two options due to the scale of construction works required.
Option 1: $4.83m
Option 2: $8.48m
The City has committed to contributing $1.5m in its forward financial plan to the construction of this facility and can apply for a Community Sporting and Recreation Facilities funding (CSRFF) grant from the Department of Sport and Recreation. If successful, this will cover up to one third of the building costs that meets DSR's requirements.
The City supports the concept of shared clubhouse facilities and infrastructure at Fremantle Park and will write to other interested clubs seeking formal support and commitment to financial contributions.
Garry Gillard | New: 21 June, 2016 | Now: 15 April, 2018