Q: In what ways are you apart of it?
DM: Within the Sociable Weaver Group our Sociable Weaver housing design and construction arm has a minimum 7.5-star energy rating and we push the bar to an average of 8-8.5 stars. We’re really trying to incorporate into our clients’ budgets water storage, solar PV, passive solar design, non-toxicity and building biology. We also have a zero waste philosophy. We also have our development wing, Small Giants Developments, and within that we’re really taking a lot of the elements that we’ve learnt and incorporated in the Sociable Weaver housing and put them into the development space.
We’re starting to collaborate with other likeminded businesses who want to also bring that positive change to the built environment. It’s great talking about what we’re doing, what they’re doing and what the world might look like in 10, 20, 100 or 200 years’ time.
Q: Are there any exciting green projects you’re working on at the moment?
DM: Yes, the Commons Hobart just had its foundations poured and is due for completion in 2020. There will be 30 apartments, and a retail and commercial space on the ground floor. Every apartment is north facing, and location-wise it’s a great site, with views of Mt Wellington, plus it’s close to communal markets. It’s carbon positive with a nine-star energy rating, which is off the charts. It may be the first for Tasmania, or even Australia, with this type of build.
With this development we’ve focused on [accommodating] electric vehicles, and car sharing and bikes spaces to reduce car parking. The design focuses on providing a connection to nature through rooftop gardens and communal areas, such as the laundries and entertainment facilities. We’ve set up spaces to allow people to run into each other and create a community within the building. I’m really excited to see that go up and be completed.