Port pushes to keep Dockers
Wind turbines and a solar farm form part of a $100 million pitch by the Fremantle City Council to keep the Fremantle Dockers at historic Fremantle Oval.
Fremantle mayor Dr Brad Pettitt has promised to extend the Port’s famous cappuccino strip to link it with the ground and said the council had already committed $2 million to offsetting the capital cost of the project in a bid to stave off an attractive bid by Cockburn to lure the Dockers to the Cockburn Central West site as a venue for a new community shared state of the art training facility.
Dr Pettitt confirmed the overall cost of the council’s concept plan for fremantle Oval would climb towards $100 million but could not give specific breakdowns on the cost of various aspects of the plan, or the cost to the Dockers.
He said the council had some more work to do to narrow the financial difference between the two bids but was committed to providing comparable facilities at Fremantle’s spiritual home.
“The city is committed to providing the Fremantle Football Club with the type and quality of facilities they need to remain in Fremantle for the long term,” he said. “We are well advanced in plans for the site and have funding arrangements in place as part of our recently adopted 2012/13 budget to expedite this process.”
He confirmed that the University of Notre Dame had also been involved in planning for the site.
Dr Pettitt revealed two distinct plans for the precinct, one which involved re-claiming the South Fremantle Football Club’s site and another which involved incorporating the Bulldogs current building into the plans.
“The Fremantle Football Club has, including as recently as this month, advised us that they are happy with the way negotiations are headed and that our facility ticks all of the boxes in terms of the scope and quality of facilities that they required in Fremantle,” he said.
It is understood that planes released at today’s press conference were the council’s own plans rather than joint plans involving the Dockers. Fremantle’s own plans are not expected to include solar farms and wind turbines.
Dr Pettitt said he was confident the club could be convinced that the 6,000 square metre Stan Reilly site would give the club scope to build current facilities that led the competition for quality and would also have room for future improvement.
The Dockers are currently carrying out due diligence of the Fremantle Oval site and the Cockburn site. The club has said it would require a “compelling case” to leave the spiritual home of Fremantle Oval but it is understood the financial incentives offered by Cockburn are significant.
The Dockers declined to comment on the council’s release of plans.