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Hey Phil, Just read your comment! Aeroponics It’s coming to Brisbane Very soon. Our company will be producing it here, our main target market is apartment living people, as this system is made from…

Sam on The future of farming is up in the air

Arup has produced some wonderful talents across so many more recent disciplines. When Arup provided only structural consulting, I worked with an Arup engineer who provided his calculations without any…

ecojag on AECOM nabs Arup’s Amy Child

I have been amazed and horrified driving around new build Western Sydney suburbs to see whole tracks of new houses with BLACK tile roofs. So I read this article hoping to read that they were high '…

Frank on The truth about dark roofs and cool roofs

I think the clear reason people are not cycling is because of the lack of separated cycleways / bike lanes - not mandatory helmets. In cities where separated bike lanes are being prioritised particip…

Jane on Time for Sydney to take cycling seriously

I cycle to work 3-4 times per week, a short 8km but what constantly amazes me is the poor quality of our roads in general. Even before we look at dedicated bike infrastructure, I would love to see th…

Nathan on Time for Sydney to take cycling seriously

This is an excellent article and I entirely agree with the issues you have mentioned along with a few solutions that can be implemented. It is quite surprisin however that you would write a rather lo…

thomas on Time for Sydney to take cycling seriously

Very good news! It is fascinating to see technology leaders like Amazon commit to transforming other industries through innovation. Prefab homes business has great potential and tackles quite successf…

Delyan on Amazon dips toes into prefab construction

Lovely, optimism bringing words:) Thank you. I love my native bees coming early summer to my house in the Perth hills. Sitting on my veranda and observing them entering various available holes hearing…

Anna on Why there’s a buzz about our native bees

More housing yes but we are still not keeping up with population growth (especially when student numbers are included). Therefore not surprising that rental costs remain high. Unfortunately the othe…

Fred on Can the market provide affordable housing?

The NEG has Abbott stamped all over it. It is a road map to disaster. The Prime Minister and Minister Frydenberg need to acknowledge this and start again, taking advice from people who are investing i…

Graham Mantle on Coal-fired power stations not okay

Hi Michael, Thank you for your sharing.....has motivated me again! Have been mulling over soil carbon and the built environment for quite a few years.....I hope to help promote this more as I'm totall…

Peter James on When the rains stop

There are two energy saving resources missing from your list. For South Australia there is the EnergySmartSaver.com.au website which has a free downloadable energy saving book for South Australian…

Jon Dee on Governments tackle energy bill stress

Michael, can you believe those same government officials want to make local Council's like Blacktown buy stormwater that Council wants to harvest! We have demonstrated to them time and again that ur…

Mark Liebman on When the rains stop

John, thank you for feedback and for your interesting suggestion; food for thought and I'll think about it. I appreciate the time you've taken and will ponder. Work in progress, Michael

Michael Mobbs on When the rains stop

There is a financial answer. One that will help farmers save their farms from overexploitation. That answer is a monthly stipend from the Federal Government covering all the valuable farmed land in t…

John Doyle on When the rains stop

Its a great time to get involved in the waste & recycling educational workshops run by both the private and public sectors. I've been providing workshops on how to avoid being a victim of ille…

Jake Hickey on On why waste is the next front

Will our western parkland nature corridor be built over? Living in this area has given me the joy of looking over our natural bushland, minimal as it is, to hear and see the bird life that also lives …

Annette mae on City Deal struck for Western Sydney

Great story - more hotels should get nabers ratings - I'm sure some organisations, public and private, would like to make informed decisions about where they stay that includes their environmental imp…

Richard Stokes on CEFC goes after hotel efficiency

Until we ditch the helmet law at least go to the balanced law that the Northern Territory have got (and with better success on the rest of the country) bikes in general and bike share in particular is…

Michael on Bikeshare: a challenge worth solving

No, Steve, “the country produced 530,000 tonnes of wood waste, much of which went to landfill”. It’s a good question, where did the wood waste originate? And what was the impact of harvesting th…

Tim on Wood waste could find new home in concrete

Janet, I believe the article is talking about wood waste from landfill. Regarding your assertion linking timber harvesting from native forests in Australia to species extinctions, please advise what s…

Steve on Wood waste could find new home in concrete

Great article Sharon, may every transport planner and decision maker be required to navigate the places they design on a bike! Jennifer, I can recommend a step-through bike – makes it much easier t…

Lisa on Closing the gender gap in active transport

Queensland and NSW police should take a look at the approach used by British police. They have been successfully enforcing similar measures: https://www.citylab.com/transportation/2017/01/london-bike-…

Sharon Moller on Cars flouting cyclist safety rules

Cars occupy too much space to be a viable transport system, a car travelling at 60kph occupies nearly 400sqm of space. They work fine until space runs out for housing and distances become too long to…

Kevin Cobley on The battle for space on our roads

Thanks for posting this. As someone renting in a wealthy "leafy" area where I couldn't possibly buy and where the residents always arc up about any change whatsoever, I found the headline reporting fr…

Damon on RBA should stay out of zoning issues

This is a welcome addition to discussion of urban development in Australia. I feel there is what someone called 'typological amnesia' in Oz: we simply can't remember how to build decent medium density…

Matthew on Medium density’s new model

Smart phones don’t make smart people. Smart meters don’t make smart people. Smart cities will not make places or people smarter, or more sustainable. Only the people themselves can do that.

MT on Will smart cities be responsible cities?

Bravo, for putting it out there. While the jury may out on what governance model would best suit our city, what's missing is robust evidence and conversation with the public in the first instance abo…

Jeanette on Our cities need a governance revolution

Hi Frank, If you read my detailed report I discuss how this typology came about with floor plans for reference of exemplary contemporary typologies. The 20th Century shop houses of Hanoi and Saig…

Sophie Solomon on Medium density’s new model

Frank, In most cases narrow residual side yards are a poor use of valuable urban land, and side ventilation is difficult without compromising privacy. Well oriented terraces with north and south facin…

Peter Skinner on Medium density’s new model

AFAIK Vietnam's narrow houses - as in Hanoi's Old/French Quarter - were triggered by high taxes on property width - so some built 6 storey houses on narrow blocks to reduce their taxes. http://a4.p…

Frank on Medium density’s new model

Thanks for your work Jeff. Back in the days of glass bottles it was easy enough to take bottles back to the shop for a refund. Why is our (Victorian) government so reluctant to introduce a deposit s…

Step on Waste crisis: “the fear is palpable”

True, but Australia's housing stock has many voids to fill and surely a range of options to suit people's varied circumstances (certainly including more appropriately designed apartments) is what's ne…

Andrew Carter on Planning for tiny houses

From an accessibility point of view, Tiny Houses are very unsatisfactory. They are invariably elevated, and well, tiny! And there are usually many space-saving features that require constant (fiddly) …

Mary Ann Jackson on Planning for tiny houses

The Great Pacific garbage patch is a myth in terms of being an island of rubbish. As described on Wikipedia: "The patch is characterized by exceptionally high relative pelagic concentrations of p…

NR on Finding investment gold in plastic rubbish

I love them. How not surprising that The Australian would turn its steely glare upon them! Sydney should build some of those sensational and gorgeous ecosystem towers like they have in Singapore!

Robert B on Green walls come under attack

While dead foliage can certainly burn, the greater fire risk with some VG systems comes from the PET plastic microfibers that constitute the synthetic felt that the reticulations run down to feed the …

Lloyd Godman on Green walls come under attack

Great to see some very pertinent issues raised here on many aspects of vertical walls. Love walking past Central Park and appreciate the maintenance expended on its green wall. These walls could ra…

nicholas loder on Green walls come under attack

Whilst some of the points made in the article are logical, we are still well short of quantifying all of the ecosystem services provided by green walls, and every time we study a new aspect, the outco…

Fraser Torpy on Green walls come under attack

If you want to read a critical paper on vertical gardens which also outlines how it can be done a super sustainable manner - read this paper we wrote for the Tall Building Council -- http://lloydgodma…

Lloyd Godman on Green walls come under attack

Interesting Geoff that you haven't used examples of a man's parenting ability being diminished by personal ambition. What is the difference with a women and their personal ambition detracting from suc…

Meg on Hopes for Jacinda Ardern’s power pregnancy

A few of the assumptions here lie in comparing all greenlife technologies and applications as a single entity. Bonsai are not cheap potted colour, farms are not parkland, botanic gardens are not remna…

Erik van Zuilekom on Green walls come under attack

You can't maintain if it is not done right in the first place. Too many "experts" with no old school experience, since all of that is not new. The experience of a gardener comes from patience - not th…

Jorg Breuning on Green walls come under attack

My view is that despite the shortcomings, they are still a fantastic innovation, and genuinely worthwhile investment, along with green roofs. Australia needs to catch up with the game on this for bett…

Rodriguez on Green walls come under attack

Green walls can play an important part in urban greening and urban cooling. However, they should complement, but never replace, developers contributions to improving multi functional public green spac…

Dr. Lyndal Plant on Green walls come under attack

WOW! about time we have some common ground. I have been preaching this for years and we are one of the worlds premier manufacturers. In fact my key note in London addressed "What is your design purpos…

George Irwin on Green walls come under attack

As an economic test of sustainability, if the green wall was treated as parkland in a development and handed over to the local council, would the residents and businesses in that council area see the …

Roger Walker on Green walls come under attack

The issue of the maintenance of any landscaping on structure (vertical or horizontal) is a key element of any consideration of its sustainability credentials. Landscaping on structure is certainly not…

Dr Philip Pollard on Green walls come under attack

Mr Chandler, I commend the discussion. I have tried for years to bring our build costs down (through pre-fab) as our labour costs soar to unnerving heights. So for me, it has become a matter of reg…

steve christo on Prefab: solution or symptom?

Justin, you have made clear what must have been a jumbled and tortured series of events in which the parties with the deepest pockets could pay for quantities of legal assistance not affordable to the…

Sandy McDonald on VCAT, we have a problem

I appreciate David Chandler's thoughts on the Prefabrication industry and note his big picture position on the industry. Universities certainly are the hubs for the higher level research and creative …

Greg Cheetham on Prefab: solution or symptom?

I think it’s exciting that new models of transportation are being explored and alternatives to car dependency investigated. True, autonomous vehicles with a high ownership factor would be sub-opti…

Nicholas Loder on Car Wars: Return of the Planners

Terrific article about what sounds like an awful, amateur hour decision by VCAT. Thanks for going to the trouble to document it as a lesson, though what the positive take-out is I am not sure. I'm i…

Mick Coleman on VCAT, we have a problem

A really well written article, so easy to follow. What the h--- is the ALP doing? The result here is terrible but that the ALP seems like it isn't even supporting a democratic planning process. I wou…

Ingrid on VCAT, we have a problem

"The push by the residents involved to have Amendment C137 signed off in order to protect themselves from higher height outcomes did not work ". What do you mean please? The article says the C1…

Ingrid on VCAT, we have a problem

as I heard the other day - if we move to driverless cars, that may allow empty uber type cars to circulate in waiting - causing congestion from driverless cars ! a little like our new 'wonderful' s…

Frank on Car Wars: Return of the Planners

For the sake of accuracy, the final Amendment C137 was not ultimately adopted unanimously by Darebin Council. An earlier form of the amendment that included height limits at 4 storeys was passed unani…

Fiona Florian on VCAT, we have a problem

This account, if accurate, is dispiriring in the extreme. Victoria is rapidly shedding its quality design reputation while the disregard given to the community's will as expressed through the plannin…

Patrick Fensham on VCAT, we have a problem

when I lived in sub-tropical Brisbane I would feel totally enervated like I was dying of heat prostration on summer mornings/middays at 26C with high humidity and still air (before the afternoon thund…

Frank Brown on Brisbane’s CitySmart is scaling up

The final document is a very watered down version of the initial draft report. It just promotes the value of good design but has no requirements or usability - all the principles and outcomes that wer…

Sam on NSW commits to integrated design policy

It worries me that Lot A is created by harvesting backyards, this fails to acknowledge that equitable access to green space is a paramount issue for the city. Considering the impacts that bare and bar…

Meg on Price versus value in Millers Point

That's a good point that you're raising John. It's a terrific idea and well developed, but it seems there's 2 systems of panels. Perhaps only the ones facing the same way are commoned up so there are …

Hans on Now for prefab solar arrays

Well said Bruce, great wrap on the current state of energy efficiency schemes, or lack there-of! I'm sick of talking up the potential NESS in our classes as a pro-active national strategy. Years of d…

Steve Kostoff on The NESS is dead. Finally!

The target agreed in Paris was 1.5C of warming, not 2C. Australia is lagging behind the world. It's a disgrace and only because Big Coal seems to have a stranglehold over the Liberal and National part…

Matthew on Finkel Review – What they said

Running a national energy grid just can't be done with a day-to-day "marketplace" braindead politicians have inflicted upon us after selling off the infrastructure. An electricity market requires lon…

Kevin Cobley on Finkel Review – What they said

Two housing coops were successful in Canberra in the 1970s. Formed by mainly young families working in Canberra for the Whitlam Labor Government, the coops attracted members looking for architect desi…

J Mant on Has the sharing economy been co-opted?

Making a city more female friendly is part of the aim of Universal Design - designing with everyone in mind. Indeed, if you design for a pram, a trolley, wheeled luggage or a wheelie walker, you desig…

Jane Bringolf on Creating the female-friendly city

Hi Heather...true that indeed! Unfortunately it seems sometimes tech revolution can take us the other way too. Like mountains of e-waste and the rise of fake news. But def with you that tech can chang…

Ben Peacock on The Do Gooder’s Dilemma

This article triggered some great thoughtfulness for me, thank you. I think there's a technology dimension too. As the revolutionary solutions become available we need to be able to jump on that band …

Heather on The Do Gooder’s Dilemma

Ben I have not met you but heard about you and your agency a lot on our work (Pollinate research) particularly as I head up the Society division- dedicated to the purpose sector. You have nailed e…

pamela Souvlis on The Do Gooder’s Dilemma

Hello Charles, can you please tell me what your experience is with energy efficient homes. Where do you live? Are you interested in getting 'cool roofs' and walls recognised in the building code and e…

Joan Day on Warming up to climate-sensitive design

I would rather live in a large, sustainable home than a tiny, sustainable home just because some people's opinions are as such. Very few people have a goal to have a tiny, sub-par sustainable home out…

Kim on Sustainability House awarded 10 gold stars

Matthew, maybe you should be putting in an enquiry with the board who selects these projects to find out what their selection process entails. I would imagine that combined, they have a pretty impress…

Kim on Sustainability House awarded 10 gold stars

'A window is often designed to be a fixed element or opens to just 45-50 per cent of its capacity, which limits passive cooling benefits. A wider opening window means greater airflow, which will help …

annon on Warming up to climate-sensitive design

When you quote 87% of heat ingress via windows, I wonder if you have a percentage heat ingress via the dark walls in the top photo? My medium coloured bricks get very hot on the western wall and the h…

Joan Day on Warming up to climate-sensitive design

Indeed! We need to remember that cultivating a sense of community and a deep respect for our ecosystems is incredibly important, and if we aren’t careful we risk losing that altogether. We really do…