Jobs and business news: Aurecon; WA government; Arup

Job ads for housing and construction sectors are still on the decline but are forecasted to pick back up again in line with rising building approvals, according to the latest SEEK employment report.

Australia’s iconic water tank making waves as an urban favourite

There’s something deeply iconic about the galvanised water tank in Australian architecture. It’s a practical response to the need to save water, and at the same time a symbol of a growing sensitivity to the need for a more sustainable way of life.

7 tools to help UK developers reduce life-cycle carbon emissions

More and more developers want to cut down the life cycle and embodied carbon of their projects – the greenhouse gas emissions caused by producing and delivering materials and construction at the site, and by their in-use and end-of-life phases.

Post-Grenfell anxiety for insurers, regulators and building owners continues

Some insurance companies worldwide have stopped insuring tower blocks clad with the same sort of materials that led to the rapid spread of the fire in London’s Grenfell Tower that killed 72 people. Building regulations are also struggling to catch up with effective regulation and monitoring.

The case for passive homes as a national standard

The energy policies and building standards that govern our homes need to keep us comfortable and limit global warming. Passive house, a rigorous building standard for ultra-low energy buildings, ticks these boxes.

The truth about dark roofs and cool roofs

It seems like a no-brainer: cooling of buildings and neighbourhoods can be helped by having light coloured roofs. But the question has caused no end of controversy. Let’s settle it once and for all.

House of the future: what Sekisui House says about prefab and zero energy

Many Australians still equate prefabricated construction with mass-produced, characterless houses that are not built to last. But one of Japan’s biggest builders of prefab homes has been in Australia for nearly 10 years now. And it can see the tide is turning. Not only are sales of its prefab showpiece growing, but a zero energy […]

Why regional sourcing makes sense for building projects

When it comes to sourcing materials for a building project, thinking local can have huge benefits, including sustainability wins, greater transparency around compliance and enhanced financial flexibility.

24 ways to improve the building industry

Better more competent certifiers more often might help stem the tide of bad building practice. So might bringing an end to performance based standards that allows some builders to “turn black into white”.

Market Pulse: Arup growth, PLACESCORE launch, Solar Savers

Infrastructure and building growing in unison Arup’s infrastructure and building projects are growing rapidly in Australia, particularly in Sydney. NSW region leader Andrew Pettifer says business grew strongly last year and they anticipate growth continuing this year. “Roughly speaking our office went from 400 to 600 staff last year, which is a step change really, […]

Queensland Building Plan: Why six star apartments may not be the target

Late last year the Queensland government released discussion papers around a new Queensland Building Plan. Consultation ends this month on reform proposals for both the residential and commercial building and development sector. For the commercial building sector, there are few proposed measures recommended. One is to develop a non-mandatory development code for living roofs and […]

How wood is good for creating healthier buildings

According to a growing swathe of research, timber used as a material for interiors and furnishings can enhance human wellbeing and contribute to improved indoor environment quality, from maintaining a sense of warmth in winter to absorbing moisture and enhancing our ability to think. Wood works on multiple levels, director of the Centre for Sustainable […]

Book Review: Smarter Buildings Better Experiences

There’s a lot of buzz about how technology can deliver more sustainable buildings, but for the layperson, understanding exactly what’s what and why it might matter can be somewhat challenging.