By Romilly Madew, Chief Executive, Green Building Council of Australia
Prosperity or sustainability? Liveability or prosperity? Development or sustainability? It shouldn’t be an either/or decision, but a question about how each can go hand-in-hand.
Australians are the richest people in the world by median income, and have some of the world’s most ‘liveable’ cities. But we also have some of the highest rates of greenhouse gas emissions, energy consumption and car dependence, and a stark divide exists between the opportunities available to residents of the inner suburbs and those available to those on the city fringes and in regional or rural areas.
Our challenge is to create communities that are liveable, competitive, productive AND environmentally sustainable.
The Australian Institute of Architects (AIA) has recognised Grocon Chief Executive and GBCA Chair, Daniel Grollo, for his ‘outstanding work in the advancement of sustainability’ with a 2013 Leadership in Sustainability Prize.
At the recent Planning Institute of Australia (PIA) National Congress, GBCA Executive Director Adam Beck presented to delegates on the importance of collaboration in making sustainability work – whether it’s building a rating tool or a whole city.
The City of Melbourne’s new planning amendment will ensure building and development brings long-term financial benefits to building owners and long-term health and productivity benefits to building tenants. But the Victorian Minister for Planning’s vision for a 20-minute Melbourne may remain a dream unless the Minister engages with industry to establish clear and measureable objectives.
International design practice HASSELL has registered Australia’s first Green Star – Interiors project, with its soon-to-open studio in Sydney set to be one of the nation’s greenest offices.
The Green Star - Communities ‘Accessibility and Adaptability’ credit is helping to make our communities more liveable today, and equipping them to adapt to the changing needs of Australians into the future.
Australian development group Stockland has recently completed a large scale study of its communities’ residents, to gauge public perception of what makes a community liveable.
Working with the Green Star – Custom rating tool development team, McDonald’s Australia has broken new ground for the hospitality industry by becoming the first quick service food provider to develop a Green Star – Custom rating tool to assess and certify its outlets.
Apollo Education and the London Borough of Richmond Upon Thames have worked together to double the number of students attending Holy Trinity Primary School in Richmond, London. During the £4.7 million upgrade of the school, 993 square metres of existing space was refurbished, while a further 1185 square metres of new teaching space was added. And, through the clever use of ‘Passivhaus’ design principles, Holy Trinity C of E Primary School has achieved a BREEAM ‘Excellent’ rating.
How efficient, healthy and productive are Australia’s schools? Revealing the poor understanding of the condition of education infrastructure across America, the USGBC has released its first State of Our Schools Report. The Council’s Center for Green Schools estimates that it will take US$271 billion to bring America’s school buildings up to working order and compliance with laws. Add to that the modernisation costs needed to ensure schools meet today’s education, safety and health standards, and a jaw-dropping US$542 billion is required.
AFP House / VIC
5 Star Green Star - Office Design v3
99 Elizabeth Street, Sydney / NSW
4 Star Green Star - Office Design v3
Life Sciences Building / NSW
5 Star Green Star - Education Design v1
Lifestyle Working Collins Street / VIC
5 Star Green Star - Office Design v3
Westralia Airports Corporation – Echo 1 Office Building / WA
5 Star Green Star - Office As Built v2
“Finishing my Masters qualifications and living in a large, international award-winning sustainable community really helped me add value during the development of the Green Star - Communities PILOT rating tool, which is already starting to change the industry. Now I am fortunate enough to be engaged on Australia’s first Green Star - Communities project (“loop”) which is setting new standards and leveraging parts of Ecomplish Consulting’s niche and independent, sustainable design, development and project management services.”