Following being nominated at the Contemporary Music Awards and having the first of its 2014 lineup leaked by one of their bands, organisers of the St. Jerome’s Laneway Festival have confirmed a deal that will see the West Australian leg of the popular annual music festival relocating from its current home at the Perth Cultural Centre to a new site in Fremantle in time for next year’s 2014 edition in February, as The West Australian reports.

The City Of Fremantle has approved a five-year deal with promoters Sunset Events, who sent a request last week to the City Of Fremantle to use parts of the Port City’s Esplanade Reserve and surrounding West End streets, such as Croke and Mouat Streets, for Laneway Festival.

In its submission, Sunset Events pointed out that the annual indie music one-day event had outgrown its current location at the Perth Cultural Centre with strong ticket sales prompting the move. This year’s edition, featuring Alt-J, Bat For Lashes, Flume, Alpine, and more, brought a sellout crowd of 8,000 people,  nearly doubling its 2009 Perth launch which drew 4,500 ticketholders.

It’s believed that the new Fremantle site could host up to 12,000 people, allowing for the festival’s ongoing growth and expansion at its current rate, while moving to the port would help stimulate local business. “We love the current location but Laneway is a growing venture and the Perth Cultural Centre is a very busy location” – Dave Chitty, Sunset Sounds

“The festival will undoubtedly bring a much needed economic influx to Fremantle’s retailers, as well as bringing a youthful and vibrant demographic,” said Fremantle Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Tim Milsom. “We feel this event will certainly add to Fremantle’s quirky and colourful atmosphere.”

“We love the current location but Laneway is a growing venture and the Perth Cultural Centre is a very busy location,” said Sunset Sounds director Dave Chitty of the shift, which also means Laneway avoids a clash with the Perth International Arts Festival (PIAF) and Fringe World events, which put their festivitites at the Perth Cultural Centre on hold during Laneway’s February showing.

PIAF General Manager Julian Donaldson said having all three events at the cultural centre proved a boon for Perth audiences, but conceded that there was pressure in sharing the same venue space. “If the move to Fremantle enables Laneway to grow its audience, we wish them the very best,” said Mr Donaldson.

Outgrowing it’s Perth location due to its ballooning popularity is just a symptom in Laneway’s overall success and expoential growth. What started as a street party in a few Melbourne alleys back in 2004 eventually expanded nationally, then globally with the Singapore and Auckland, New Zealand editions of Laneway, now complemented by the minting of the first ever American Laneway earlier this year.

The National and Sigur Ros will headline Laneway in Detroit Michigan this September, alongside an impressive lineup that includes Aussie favourites (and musical pals) Chet Faker and Flume, as well as Frightened Rabbit, Washed Out, Wairpaint, Solange, and Savages – the post-punk lasses who have already let slip that they’ll be playing the Australian Laneway in February 2014.

Our Tone Deaf reviewer said of the Melbourne leg this year said that Laneway is “fast becoming the most enviable date on the summer festival calendar.”

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