David Risstrom - Greens Melbourne City Councillor 1999-2004
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GREENING COMMERCIAL DEVELOPMENTS
 
 

ACHIEVEMENT: All new commercial developments will be required to have a five star energy rating. Existing commercial developments that improve their energy rating can enter a competition for the most effective and innovative way to reduce energy use. Suggestions about how to improve lighting and air conditioning performance will be sent out with the rate notices.

TARGET DATE: January 2004 PROGRESS: Ongoing.

DESCRIPTION:The greening of commercial developments involves building or maintaining buildings with regard to their environmental, social and economic impact in their construction and operations. In the past, construction, often equating to only about 10% of the cost of the building over its life, was driven by a desire to minimise costs with little regard to the economic and environmental costs of lighting, heating, occupier productivity and water use and waste. Greening commercial developments is likely to encompass a whole of life approach so that smarter, longer term approaches are taken to building construction and maintenance.

The City of Melbourne has committed to building a world leading green building to house its future administrative offices on Tivoli Square, north of the Melbourne Town Hall. The 60L Green Building in Carlton has also been completed, providing proof that innovative green buildings can be built and maintained on a commercial basis.

I sought in 1999 for the greening of commercial developments to be requirements imposed by Melbourne City Council on development proposals we approve. Due to a concern that a higher standard imposed by Melbourne City Council than is required in the State planning schemes would allow a developers to successfully appeal to VCAT on this point, the administration was loathe to implement these measures. What did evolve from my measures was the Commercial Building Partnership, which was a partnership between Melbourne City Council, the Sustainable Energy Authority of Victoria and the Property Council of Australia to establish 5 pilot sites to demonstrate the efficacy of green building practices.

Through work with the State Government, the mandatory 5 star requirement for residential premises was enacted as State legislation.

Requirements for minimum standard for commercial buildings are being developed with intentions to raise the bar for requirements as the sector becomes familiar with the benefits available from greening their developments.

Examples of Green Commercial Development will be highlighted on this site as they evolve and as I become aware of them.

60L GREEN BUILDING

The City of Melbourne has provided a $100,000 grant to assist the developers of 60L (60 Leicester St. Carlton) to promote the efficacy of fully commercial green developments in Melbourne. More details on the 60L Green Building can be found at the website at 60L.

SUSTAINABILITY CITY OF MELBOURNE COUNCIL HOUSE DEVELOPMENT

The City of Melbourne has committed to building a highly energy and material use efficient 5 star Council House building on Tivoli Square, Little Collins Street.

April 2003: This information is provided from a memo distributed to Councillors on 17 April 2003: Council is currently working with three consultants from the Martin Centre, Cambridge University, UK, who are visiting Australia and working with SEAV the (Sustainable Energy Authority Victoria). They are assisting and advising the design team for the new Council Accommodation Project (CH2 offices). Dr Koen Steemers (Architect and Environmental Design Consultant), Richard Cochrane (Low Energy Services Engineer) and Gail Kenton (Sustainable Architecture Consultant) will make a presentation of their work that looks at the impact on our future urban spaces as a result of planning for sustainability. It will include:

* Space quality analysis
* Daylighting and shade modelling
* Salt bath modelling techniques

Update: August 2003 - Melbourne City Council's new administration building known as CH2 (short for Council House 2) will be a world leading example of sustainable design and operation. Details of the building and the assessment of the Green Building Council are included in the media release below, available as a word download by clicking on the underlined title.

CH2 LAUNCHED PUBLICLY - COUNCIL ON TRACK FOR NEW STANDARD IN GREEN DESIGN

From the revolutionary air cooling in the basement to vertical gardens and wind turbines on the roof, the City of Melbourne’s new building on Little Collins St is setting out to break new ground in sustainable office development.
Melbourne Lord Mayor John So said the building, known as Council House 2 or CH2, was being designed with environmental considerations embedded into every part of it.

Accordingly, plans for the building had recently been awarded a six star rating – world leader status – by the Green Building Council, which announced its new rating system on July 30 (see www.gbcaus.org).

“With CH2, we are striving for the Green Building Council’s highest honour, a six star rating that would put Melbourne know how and design on the international stage while creating a building that will return financial and environmental rewards for many long years to come,” the Lord Mayor said. “CH2 will add enormous vibrancy to this significant section of Little Collins St, with new shops, cafes and pedestrian connections – and as it does so it will strive to set a new standard in how buildings can deliver financial, social and environmental rewards. This will be a win-win situation for everyone involved – we are taking a responsible, long-term approach to developing a building the council needs to have while setting an example of what must be achieved if we are to be a truly sustainable and thriving city.”

The Lord Mayor said elements proposed for inclusion in the design of CH2 included:
· A light-coloured southern façade where cool fresh air would be drawn in and down through the building. The northern façade would be a dark colour to absorb hot, stale air from the building and allow it to rise up and out of the wind-driven turbines on the roof;
· Cladding the western façade in wooden louvres made from recycled timber that would move with the sun to reduce glare and heat gain;
· The northern façade would comprise open-air balconies, with electronically controlled blinds to reduce glare and heat gain;
· Vines would grow along the full height of the building to create a green microclimate. Gardens would also be established on each floor and on the roof.
· The ratio of walls to windows would be 50/50 to minimise heat loss/gain through the glass. Windows would be larger at lower levels where there was less light and taper to smaller sizes on the upper level where light was stronger;
· Pipes filled with “phase change material” would be installed in the basement and would work in a similar fashion to an esky or wine cooler. At night, water cooled by the shower and cooling towers would refrigerate the phase change material; during the day fresh water would be piped through it to cool the building via ceiling radiators.
· Floors would be hollow, with individual vents that workers could open and shut to cool their area as required
· Ceilings would be wavy and fitted with radiator-like grills channelling cold water to cool the hot air created by computers, lights, human activity and other factors. Slots in the ceilings would channel stale air to the outside of the building
· Five shower towers more than three storeys high would cascade water down to eye-catching glass panels above the entrance. The showers would help cool the air, particularly for ground-floor shops
· Special windows on every floor would automatically open late at night to flush the building with cool fresh air.
· Solar power and rainwater would be collected on the roof. Water would also be collected from the underground sewer, thoroughly filtered and used to water plants and flush toilets.
· Sensors would constantly monitor natural light and adjust interior lights accordingly. The building would be dimmer than most, with individual lights at work stations that could be turned on and off as required.
· Carpets would be designed to be pulled apart when they age and the fibres recycled for new carpets.
· A large area would be set aside for bicycle parking, lockers and change rooms

“All of these potential features and more combine to paint a picture of a building that would continue to save energy and nurture the environment throughout its long life,” the Lord Mayor said. “Meanwhile the constant flow of naturally cooled fresh air, along with access to natural light and greenery would be a wonderful antidote to the stale recycled air that afflicts so many modern office buildings and adds to costly absenteeism due to colds, flu and other easily spread diseases.”

The redevelopment of the Little Collins St precinct including CH2 is expected to cost about $77 million. The project is at documentation stage and the first stage is scheduled to be completed in 2005.

“We expect the building to deliver ongoing operational costs and greenhouse reductions as well as revitalise this important part of the city,” the Lord Mayor said.

The City of Melbourne’s team for CH2 comprises:
· The City of Melbourne’s City Projects design team with DesignInc
· Quantity Surveyors Donald, Cant, Watts and Corke (DCWC)
· Structural Engineers The Bonacci Group
· Service Engineers Lincolne Scott
· Design advice/analysis, low energy services Ché Wall and Advanced Environmental Concepts
· Acoustic Consultant Marshall Day Acoustics
With help from:
· CSIRO (Evergreen)
· Flagstaff Program Consultants
· Sustainable Energy Authority Victoria
· Carl Mahoney and Associates Climate Consultants
· Artists Simon Perry, Steven Hope, Cameron Robbins
· Blythe-Sanderson Disability Management.

Update: December 31 2003: This information was taken from the MCC website on 30 December 2003.

Welcome to CH2 - A revolutionary new building that harvests sunlight, cool night air, water, wind and rain to create a lasting landmark for one of the world's most liveable cities. This is the task the City of Melbourne has set for itself with the design of Council House 2 on Little Collins St. Affectionately known as CH2, the striking building will set a new international standard in ecologically sustainable design. It also offers a financially responsible way of meeting the Council's long-term need to house staff and breathe life into an under-used part of the central city.

Artists rendition of CH2 - Council House

Construction of CH2 began in early 2004 but already the design stage of the building has been given a six-star rating by the Green Building Council of Australia 'world leader status' under the new method of comparing the environmental performance of commercial properties. The building will bring enormous vibrancy to a significant section of Little Collins St, with new shops, cafes and pedestrian connections. CH2 will make an unmistakable statement that Melbourne is a city that understands, values and excels when it comes to the environment, technology, leadership, teamwork, design, liveability, health and culture.

CH2 Fact File

What: A 10-storey building comprising:Offices for about 540 City of Melbourne staff; Retail spaces on the ground floor; Underground parking that can be converted to offices.

Where: 218 - 242 Little Collins St opposite Melbourne Town Hall near the corner of Swanston St.

Cost: $50 million, excluding fit out.

 

Cool Green Tip Of The Week -

23 April 2017: Only those who decline to scramble up the career ladder are interesting as human beings. Nothing is more boring than a man with a career: Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago 1918 -1956.

This site is written, authorised and maintained by David Risstrom , 377 Little Bourke St. Melbourne, Australiaand had more than 1,003,082 visitors and 3,052,017 hits when updated on Sun 23 April 2017.