Nightingale Housing lands in Adelaide

The Nightingale model for sustainable housing that started in Melbourne has spread its wings to Adelaide. While details are still scant, the announcement from Nightingale Housing identified Adelaide as a “place in which it is easy to imagine a Nightingale community flourishing.” “Adelaide’s commitments to renewable power and carbon neutrality, its diverse affordable housing initiatives […]

Covid a wakeup call for energy guzzling health and research facilities

Energy efficiency and diversification are two major opportunities for health and research facilities looking to save money and attract investment.    Air quality is of utmost importance for health and research facilities to protect people from bacteria, viruses, chemicals and other nasty contaminants. But keeping all that fresh air pumping through the HVAC system comes at […]

The case for social housing on church land

Tone Wheeler of Environa Studio says there are three options to find land for affordable housing: government, churches and philanthropists. The government seems little interested and same with philanthropists, he says. In a new position paper on affordable housing commissioned by Churches Housing, Wheeler makes the case for social housing on church land. Social housing […]

What must be fixed before the NSW’s Planned Housing Diversity SEPP can do what it sets out to do

While the New South Wales government’s revamped housing diversity policy is being touted as the answer to the state’s shortfalls in affordable housing, I believe the unintended consequences may have the opposite effect. The proposed changes (Housing Diversity SEPP) are far more likely to suffocate future supply. This is due to the removal of provisions […]

Corporate net-zero targets established

Corporates are on notice. To achieve science based net zero targets their goals must align with warming of no more than 1.5°C and they must neutralise their impact of residual by removing an equivalent amount of atmospheric carbon dioxide. To ensure that net-zero targets in the corporate world translate into tangible actions, the Science Based […]

Built and Nuveen fuse old with new for Sydney CBD office tower

Until a few years ago, two industrial heritage buildings in the middle of Sydney’s CBD sat unused for 20 years because no developer was brave enough to touch the tricky infill site. Building and construction company Built has risen to the challenge, on Wednesday topping out an eye-catching glass “bubble” atop the two existing buildings, […]

­­­­­­How much extra does it cost to make a building net zero carbon?

What are the real-world implications for achieving new net zero buildings? How can new buildings be designed to reach net zero performance targets and what effect does this have on cost? These are the questions researchers for the UK Green Building Council set out to answer with a deep dive into the implications for two […]

Why the MLC Building in North Sydney should be saved

Beyond concern for preserving such rich heritage, the proposed demolition of the MLC Building in North Sydney poses deep environmental concerns. History is the story of who we are. A wise society will take lessons from that history – both good and bad – and critically engage with the present to proactively shape a better future. We […]

How about a European Bauhaus for co-creating a renovation wave?

Europe’s president Ursula von der Leyen has called for “NextGenerationEU to kickstart a European renovation wave and make our union a leader in the circular economy”.  She promised to set up “a new European Bauhaus – a co-creation space where architects, artists, students, engineers, designers work together to make that happen”. At her first State […]

Beware the booming industrial sector and its poor carbon profile

The booming industrial sector is going great guns under Covid with people shopping more online and forcing up demand for more logistics space, but will the low carbon profile of many of these buildings as flagged by the Green Building councils of Australia and New Zealand potentially lead to unintended consequences. As the need for […]

The time has come for regulations that drive net zero homes

It’s time that the National Construction Code and, in NSW, BASIX, be updated to drive the trajectory to net zero energy homes. An opportunity has arisen to make major improvements in the energy efficiency and renewable energy generation of new buildings, following recent consultations and current analysis for the next update of the National Construction […]

Fremantle carbon neutral apartments to deliver 50 per cent strata savings

Fremantle-based Montreal Commons, set to become one of the first carbon neutral apartment buildings in Australia, will save its tenants 50 per cent on body corporate fees under a renewable energy deal between OP Properties and Power Ledger. The five-storey, 39-apartment complex has set a benchmark for sustainable apartment design and will use developer-funded 75kW […]

Construction’s cowboys to get a shakeup in NSW

Dodgy NSW builders, developers and certifiers are expected to get a kick up the backside as sweeping new powers come into force, with the state’s construction watchdog aiming to shake up the industry to provide confidence for prospective buyers.

Fender Katsalidis: on joining up two Brisbane office buildings

In an impressive engineering exercise, two office buildings in Brisbane were recently stitched together, maintaining much of the existing fabric while creating expansive floor plates for prospective tenants. It was challenging for the architects, Fender Katsalidis, and for the engineers Inertia Engineering. But the results will be a more sustainable product.

Landcom’s patterns for cooling the commons in Western Sydney

The heat is on for Western Sydney in more ways than one. Not only is the region expected to regularly hit 50 degrees in summer, it’s already done so. And yet it’s earmarked for major expansion of population. With a new report Cooling Common Spaces in Densifying Urban Environments the NSW government’s land development agency […]

Where’s your lithium from? EU’s New Green Deal to track critical materials

Renewable electricity generation and storage requires huge quantities of mined raw materials. In Europe, most of these elements are currently imported and unsustainably produced. So the European Commission has hatched a new plan for obtaining them within its borders, to make the industry more sustainable and resilient against outside disruptions. The commission has launched a […]

GPT fast tracks net zero target by six years

GPT has learnt much from its journey to carbon neutrality so far and now it’s going to apply those learnings to achieve a new target of net zero across its portfolio of managed assets by 2024, six years earlier than intended. Thanks to the property giant’s Energy Master Plan, three buildings in it’s Wholesale Office […]

Paving the roads with glass

An open market tender was released Tuesday to collect recycled materials such as crushed glass destined for use as road base by 15 councils in the south Sydney region. The initiative Paving the Way aims to use nearly 100 million glass containers per year that might otherwise end up in landfill. The tender contract is […]

Sustainable House Day will be virtual this year and better for it

What’s a sustainable house? According to Perth based architect Ben Caine from Leanhous, sustainability is a “very loose term that can be interpreted lots of different ways”.  That’s why he can see loads of benefits in Sustainable House Day on 20 September this year being a virtual event with lots of online tours and virtual […]

House hunters are rarely told the home energy rating – little wonder the average is as low as 1.8 stars

Most Australian homes have been built to notoriously poor standards. The energy performance of existing homes in Victoria, for instance, averages 1.8 stars – 6 stars is mandatory for newly built homes under the 10-star Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme (NaTHERS). Decision-makers typically fail to appreciate the importance of a low star rating, even though […]

Workplace flexibility the new norm

Due to Covid, more Australian businesses are looking for alternatives to costly, long-term commercial workspaces, opting instead for short-term and flexible office space options closer to home.