(16/4/16) $20m revamp for Fremantle Oval
- $20m plan to transform Fremantle Oval precinct into the region’s premier community and sporting hub
- South Fremantle and East Fremantle football clubs to co-locate, creating a WAFL centre of excellence
- Masterplan and funding models to be developed as a priority ~ project planned for completion within five years (2021)
- Fremantle Oval precinct one of six key ‘transformational’ projects identified through 2013-15 community visioning process.
The City of Fremantle is pleased to announce a $20 million plan to redevelop the Fremantle Oval precinct into the region's premier community and sporting hub.
The integrated project includes the re-alignment of the oval to be closer to the Victoria Pavilion, new club administration facilities, commercial office/retail space, a gymnasium and grass banking. The adjacent former Stan Reilly Centre site would be redeveloped as part of the project.
The redevelopment will also see South Fremantle Football Club and the East Fremantle Football Club co-located at Fremantle Oval, creating a West Australian Football League (WAFL) Centre of Excellence.
The five-year redevelopment of the Fremantle Oval precinct is one of six ‘transformational projects outlined in the City’s Freo 2029 – Transformational Moves document released last year.
Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt said developing the Fremantle Oval precinct was a vital step in Fremantle’s ongoing revitalisation and a great win for the local community and the two local WAFL clubs.
“What we’re looking to achieve is the development of a significant community asset where locals and visitors can enjoy cultural and sporting events,” Mayor Pettitt said.
“The integrated redevelopment of Fremantle Oval and adjacent areas will ensure maximum community benefit and financial sustainability of the project. We believe this is a win-win for all concerned – local football and local people.
“Once completed, the community will be able to look forward to more West Australian Football League games, improved spectator facilities and a great range of community events throughout the year.
“I also look forward to seeing East Fremantle return home to the heart of Freo and we would of course welcome the club back to Fremantle Oval with open arms,” he said.
Mayor Pettitt said the project had the strong support of the Department of Sport and Recreation, West Australian Football Commission, South Fremantle Football Club and the East Fremantle Football Club.
Discussions with the Fremantle Football Club on returning the lease back into the hands of the community when they relocate to their new training facility at Cockburn West were continuing.
“We’re currently working with the Fremantle Football Club to ensure the lease they currently hold over the ground is delivered back to the local community in a smooth and timely manner,” Mayor Pettitt said. “We look forward to resolving this quickly so we can move forward with the development of what will be a great community asset.”
East Fremantle Football Club President Mark Stewart said they had been considering options for their future for some time.
“Although we have a strong tradition at East Fremantle Oval where the club has had its home since the 1950s, a potential return to Fremantle Oval will take us back to where we started,” he said.
“We need to look to the future, so can’t overlook the benefits of a possible move back to Freo Oval which would include a modern facility, a fantastic central location and our club’s ongoing viability.”
South Fremantle Football Club President Haydn Raitt said the club could see benefits of sharing with East Fremantle Football Club and upgrades to Fremantle Oval.
“We may be old rivals, but there are many reasons why sharing Fremantle Oval makes good economic sense. We all want a sustainable future for football in Western Australia,” he said.
Mayor Pettitt said the project would be a key priority for the council over the next 12 months.
“Our next step will be to create a master plan for Fremantle Oval. Once developed, the master plan will provide us with the framework for maximising community benefit and will help guide the development of a detailed funding model.” he said.