Home' Homes : Homes 2013 Contents 134 SCOOP Homes Annual
FEATURE | Green living
What does sustainable design mean for homes
in 2013? It’s as much about location as it is
about design and construction. Homes that are
closer to where people work, play, shop and
become educated, or closer to public transport
to move people to those locations, are far more
sustainable than those that are not, when one
considers the direct and indirect costs (pollution,
health, emissions, accidents, congestion) of
How are perceptions of green residential design
changing? This is currently dominated by energy
and water. Over time, the prominence of other
resource constraints or changing climate impacts
will further affect design inputs. For example, the
increasing number of vegetable gardens to combat
rising food costs; climate change leading to
improved protection from weather variability and
extremes; and the sourcing of various construction
materials dependent on availability.
What are factors affecting this shift in attitude?
Climate change, dwindling resources, high energy
and water costs, pollution, congestion, health,
population increases, ageing demographics,
affordability, food security and biodiversity loss...
They are all contributing to these trends to greater
or lesser extents, and will continue to do so.
What are the misconceptions about sustainable
design? Sustainability is about exploring possibilities
and managing future risk. Manage that risk and
anything is possible, but that can only be achieved
by a considered process of design. A ‘one size fits all’
approach is unlikely to be sustainable.
Woods Bagot (08) 9322 0500,
The rooftop garden forms part of this home’s eco-conscious design, providing a useful, edible
garden for its residents, and greening the dull city facade surrounding it. BELOW The small-
footprint house was designed vertically, with panels prefabricated off site, reducing the area’s waste
and pollution. Panels were manufactured locally using existing moulds and recycled materials.
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