Urban Ecology and Christie Walk setting the pace for low carbon urban precincts
30 November 2021
For 30 years Urban Ecology Australia Inc has led the ecocity revolution, locally and globally, with a vision of vibrant, equitable and ecologically sustaining communities. Now they have been recognised as winners of the Community Leadership Awards, and named the new 2021 Carbon Neutral Adelaide Ambassador.
In 1999 Urban Ecology commenced construction of model ecocity development, Christie Walk. The highly successful urban development demonstrates effective emissions reduction through interventions in energy, water, land, health and pollution. With technology upgrades reducing annual electricity imports by 45,000kWh (80% down from a total of 56,000kWh purchased in 2017), an impressive 91% of the community’s energy needs are generated on site.
Urban Ecology has carefully documented lessons learnt, so that others can learn from their experience. Tertiary institutions in Australia and around the world now offer courses in Urban Ecology and international conferences on ecological cities have proliferated. Since opening, site tours with technical and social expert guides have provided thousands of visitors with a fresh vision and practical ideas of how to build ecological cities.
“For 30 years Urban Ecology Australia Inc has led the ecocity revolution, locally and globally, with a vision of vibrant, equitable and ecologically sustaining communities.”
Community Corporation Member
Hames Sharley was also recognised as a category finalist for their community leadership.
In conjunction with Scotch College, Hames Sharley has developed a powerful vision for the Scotch College Wellbeing and Sports Centre. Aligned with Hames Sharley’s company vision, the project will enable the Scotch College community to flourish, supported by their aim to achieve a global Living Building Challenge (LBC) CORE rating.
The focus of the LBC is for buildings to have a positive impact rather than to reduce negative impact. At the Centre this will be achieved through reduced consumption of power and water, promotion of walking and cycling and a 20% reduction in the embodied carbon of primary materials. Once certified, Scotch College Wellbeing and Sports Centre will be the first school in Australia to complete LBC certification at any level.
Hames Sharley works to realign incentives to reconcile the built environment with the natural environment into a civilisation that creates greater biodiversity, resilience, and opportunities for life with each adaptation and development.
Finalist Makerspace Adelaide is a creative and educational space actively modeling circular economy practices and raising community awareness. Their emphasis on the whole product life cycle has resulted in an impressive reduction of waste including: 4000 litres of sawdust diverted from landfill and donated to community; 4.9 tonnes of CO2 prevented by generating solar energy; at least 500kg timber materials reclaimed, upcycled into new products; 85% of their furniture/fittings are recovered materials; approximately 50kg 3D printing plastic material captured for recycling; and approximately 64 cubic metres of e-waste captured for recycling.
Makerspace Adelaide improves community awareness of circular economy through hands-on, community workshops and demonstrations via community services such as The Adelaide Repair Cafe and community outreach at schools, universities and global events. Their education sector partnership with Green Industries in particular harnesses the opportunity to influence the next generation on the importance of the circular economy. Through their vibrant and engaging community work, Makerspace Adelaide brings the principles of creativity, innovation, inclusion and sustainability directly to the community.