How can a Council serve its ratepayers without a very good idea about their needs and aspirations? But, has our Council asked us? Where do Fremantle ratepayers spend a typical week, and what would encourage them to do more of it in Freo?:
• Working hours: where and how do they get there, routes and transport mode,
• What do they do for recreation? Where do they go to get this, how often, transport mode? Is it free recreation like walking their dog, playing in the park or beach, Sunday Arts Centre concerts? Or is their interest not found near Freo?
• Similarly for their retail needs,
o Household, grocery and fresh food;
o white goods, etc
• Do the ratepayers use the extensive hospitality available in Fremantle, eg,
o how often to do they eat out, in food halls, cafes or restaurants, in Freo or elsewhere?
o How often do they use the Freo cafes for just a coffee and socializing?
• Would they move into the CBD into smaller accommodation such as apartments, explicitly so they could participate in the Freo entertainment precinct lifestyle?
I would expect the answers for the tiny proportion of City Ward owner/occupiers to be very different to the Freo Suburbs where most of the ratepayers live! Hence, who are the beneficiaries of the changes to City Ward that the Mayor and Councilors are driving? Is this really what the Ratepayers need and desire? Is the emphasis on the entertainment precinct appropriate? Household demographic will obviously play an important role.