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Fremantle makes case to protect its music venues

Fremantle makes case to protect its music venues
January 31, 2020

The City of Fremantle has suggested ways in which the proposed laws to protect music and entertainment venues from noise complaints might be improved and adapted to suit the whole state.

A draft Western Australian Planning Commission position statement on the so-called ‘anti-whinge’ laws was released for public comment by the state government in November last year.

The proposed laws would allow local governments to establish special entertainment precincts through their local planning scheme in which venues could apply to exceed normal noise levels up to a higher level specified in the scheme.

Local governments would also be able to determine a desired external noise level for the special entertainment precinct and set design and construction standards for noise attenuation in new developments within the precinct.

A submission on the proposed laws was considered by Fremantle Council this week.

Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt said while the council was broadly supportive of the government’s approach there were a few aspects that could be tweaked.

Mayor Pettitt advised “these measures are of particular relevance to Fremantle because we want to protect our vibrant arts, culture and music scene but also have a lot more people living in our city centre, so it’s great that the government is looking into this.

“But because at the beginning this focussed solely on Northbridge there are some elements of what’s proposed that aren’t necessarily a good fit for Fremantle or other local government areas.

“For example, because Northbridge has a high concentration of entertainment venues in a relatively small area creating a defined special entertainment precinct makes a lot of sense, but in Fremantle our entertainment venues are more dispersed.

“Designating one area as an entertainment precinct may have the unintended consequence of clustering venues in a single area and reducing the diverse mix of land uses that we want to encourage.

Mayor Pettitt added “this also doesn’t help isolated but significant local venues that wouldn’t justify the creation of a special precinct but still add considerably to the cultural life of the community and deserve protection.

“A better option may be to provide for different noise standards for all areas zoned city centre right across the state, in acknowledgement that city centre zones typically have a higher concentration of entertainment venues and other noise-generating uses and therefore the expectation of more noise.

“Some other special mixed-use areas with noise-generating activities other than entertainment, like harbours and light industrial areas, might also justify a more proactive and balanced approach to noise management.

“Perth is growing up and we need to be on the front foot in planning for the kind of places people want to live in.”

Other suggestions to be included in the City of Fremantle’s submission on the WAPC position statement include restricting noise regulation in city centres to indoor areas with the doors and windows shut and removing the regulations that classify music as a ‘nuisance’ requiring stricter controls.

Related Articles

24th January 2020 - Nambour CBD designated a special entertainment precinct and exempt from amplified music noise requirements

15th January 2020 - Music Advisory Group tasked with building a thriving Gold Coast music sector

14th November 2019 - Live music industry welcomes amendments to NSW Music Festivals Bill

25th October 2019 - Brisbane Lord Mayor’s Business Awards recognise the Fortitude Music Hall, its builder and CrossFit Torian

17th October 2019 - Live Performance Australia slams NSW Government’s ‘broken promises’ on music festival consultation

25th September 2019 - Live Performance Australia advises that collaboration is key to safer music festivals

19th September 2019 - Sydney music venue receives multi-million dollar funding boost

17th September 2019 - Music promoters back potential Gold Coast indoor entertainment arena

12th July 2019 - New research reveals Australian music’s global export value and strong international success 

16th June 2019 - Industry complaints sees Australian Competition and Consumer Commission demand music licensing reform

2nd May 2019 - Fremantle push to be the location for WA Indigenous Cultural Centre

30th March 2019 - Federal government announces $30 million commitment for contemporary music

24th March 2019 - Refurbished Fremantle Hall reopens as live music and performing arts venue

20th March 2019 - Music industry alliance urges voters to consider live performance in NSW election

27th February 2019 - New festival regulations threatens future of live music in NSW

20th February 2019 - Western Australian Government invests in safer music venues

5th March 2015 - Perth suffering ongoing losses of live music venues

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