Public domain will be key to a successful Parramatta CBD

The state government’s plan to transform Parramatta into Sydney’s second CBD is coming to fruition, with developer dollars and white-collar jobs pouring into the city. But while the private sector is keen to go green, the public domain is lagging behind.

Our pick from the archives: The Elephant Series, a new conference & Christopher Alexander’s patterns

Sydney planner Greg Paine, author of our long running Elephant Series of a few years back, will present two papers at the Regenerative City Conference in San Francisco at the end of October,which will be based on the work of mathematician and architect Christopher Alexander and his Pattern Language book. One of Mr Paine’s papers […]

Get out of my face! We’re more antisocial in a shared office space

If we all work side by side in an open-plan office or “hot desk”, moving from place to place, it’s sure to increase collaboration! It turns out that may be wrong. If you don’t have your own space, perhaps you are better off working remotely with your cat for company.

New Victorian apartment guidelines are a mixed bag

The Victorian government has released a final draft of proposed design standards for apartments for consultation, however minimum sizes have controversially been left out, an omission that has been strongly criticised by architects.

National guidelines for planning resilient communities released

Built environment professionals can ensure Australian communities are better protected from the impacts of climate change and natural disasters by getting a better understanding of risk and resilience and how to factor them into plans and buildings, according to the Planning Institute of Australia.

Vale Alastair Swayn

Professor Alastair Swayn, the inaugural ACT government architect and director of Daryl Jackson Alastair Swayn Architects in Canberra, passed away on 4 August.

Vale Stephen Ashton, 2016 joint Gold Medal winner

Australian Institute of Architects national president Ken Maher has expressed “great sadness” at the passing of Stephen Ashton, co-founder of ARM Architecture, former Victorian chapter president and joint recipient of the 2016 Gold Medal. ‘We would like to pass on our sincere condolences to Steve’s family, friends and colleagues,” Mr Maher said on behalf of […]

What’s a parklet and how can it boost business?

A Sydney collective is raising funds for a moveable piece of green infrastructure it says can revitalise streets and improve outcomes for local business.

Sydney reveals plan to grow up

The City of Sydney has opened the door to supertall buildings with a plan that could see CBD buildings reach in excess of 300 metres, part of the largest review of CBD planning controls since 1971.

Make’s local approach to design – from the skies to the way people move

London-based architectural firm Make has arrived in Sydney with three major projects under its belt including Brookfield Office Properties’ massive Wynyard Place project. But according to lead partner Ian Lomas it’s not so much the studio’s European background and experience that have determined design solutions, but local conditions – such as the light, the height […]

UrbanGrowth lodges plans for Newcastle waterfront

UrbanGrowth NSW has lodged a planning proposal for the controversial redevelopment of Newcastle’s heavy rail corridor, which it says will “connect the city to the waterfront and drive jobs, tourism and economic growth”.

Offset House: Framing Australian Suburbia

Australia is one of the world’s most urbanised nations – and one of the least dense. Fewer than 10 percent of Australians live in close proximity to a city centre, with most inhabiting the suburban hinterland. Ever since Robin Boyd’s lambasting of “featurism” in his landmark 1960 book “The Australian Ugliness”, the ‘burbs have been somewhat of a no-go […]

Floth becomes first to meet ASBEC's zero carbon definition

UPDATED 23 December 2015: Specialist engineering firm Floth Sustainable Building Consultants is the first company is Australia to meet the Australian Sustainable Built Environment Council’s zero carbon building standard definition for its head office at Fortitude Valley in Brisbane. The 1000 square metre building, designed by Mondo Architects, has also achieved 83.3 points to achieve […]

Floth becomes first to meet ASBEC’s zero carbon definition

UPDATED 23 December 2015: Specialist engineering firm Floth Sustainable Building Consultants is believed to be the first company is Australia to meet the Australian Sustainable Built Environment Council’s zero carbon building standard definition for its head office at Fortitude Valley in Brisbane. The 1000 square metre building, designed by Mondo Architects,  has also achieved 83.3 […]

Case study: Google Head Office interior, South Africa

It’s fair to say that pretty much everyone has heard of Google, but not everyone may know that the company is actively working to prevent its colossal global presence from causing colossal environmental damage.

How can we best design housing for Australia’s ageing population?

Few older Australians actually live in non-private housing such as nursing homes. Data from the 2011 Census reveals that 94 per cent of Australians who are 65 or older still live in private housing. More than half live with a partner and another quarter live alone.

Case study: The Carbon Positive House

How to build a (sustainable) world in a day. Annie Kane discovers how Archiblox is building a cutting-edge sustainable house in just six hours.

Daniel Bennett on landscape architecture and liveable cities

The Australian Institute of Landscape Architects’ newly appointed president Daniel Bennett aims to arm the organisation’s members with sound economic arguments for the importance of landscape in achieving liveable and sustainable cities.

New ACT Law Courts will showcase sustainable design

The redevelopment of the ACT’s law courts will showcase sustainable design in a bid to “meet the territory’s needs for the next 50 years in a more functional, flexible and sustainable way”.

Government releases guide to 7 star homes

The federal government, through the Department of Industry and Science’s YourHome.gov.au website, has released free architect-designed plans and specifications for homes that achieve a minimum seven star NatHERS rating in a range of climate zones.

Sustainable design permeates 2015 International Architecture Awards

Greenery, prefabricated elements, zero-energy design and repurposing of underutilised space are the key sustainability themes to have come out of the Australian Institute of Architects’ 2015 International Architecture Awards.

Digby Hall on ABW: Hmm, a new form of discrimination?

If you’re a parent who drops the kids off at school in the morning then you’ve already lost out – by the time you make it into the office all the best spots are taken and you’re left to choose from the least favourable seats, those you wouldn’t normally choose. Being given the “cheap seats” […]

Member pressures force AIA into reform mode

The Australian Institute of Architects needs to reform itself in the face of increasing pressures on its members, including tighter budgets, rising costs and greater competition, according to its national president Jon Clements.

Assemble launches small footprint living survey

Following the Victorian government’s announcement that it will reopen the discussion on apartment design standards, residential property developer Assemble has launched a survey to understand what people want out of medium- and high-density living.