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Green Smart Magazine : GreenSmart 2010
picturesque Brindabella mountain range, which inspired the estate's name, it also offers eco friendly streetscapes, large planting beds and green spaces to encourage biodiversity. A key strategy to using resources efficiently was innovative thinking right from the start, so the VBC teamed up with OZTAL Architects during the design phase. 'When you're building 1500-odd houses, a lot of material needs to be purchased, so we collaborated to design homes in which the room dimensions conformed as closely as possible to the dimensions of the materials used,' James explains. 'By adhering to the dimensions of materials such as the plasterboard, width of the rolls of carpet and the tiles in a pallet, we were able to reduce the amount of waste generated through off-cuts. This allowed us to operate more cost effectively, which lead to the provision of homes at a more affordable price. ' The VBC also limited the choice of interior design selections to four colour schemes. In doing so it was able to reduce the variety of materials required, so the company could purchase in bulk and also 'carry over' any unused material from one home to other homes in the estate with matching colour schemes. VBC staff, contractors and subcontractors regularly attend industry training programs, including HIA GreenSmart training, to review its various standards on construction and sustainability issues. 'By using the same contractors and suppliers, we minimised waste and kept everything streamlined. Basically, the aim was to maximise recycling opportunities greensmart 2010 43 © Architect: OZTAL Architects > DINING/LIVING KITCHEN GARAGE BED 2 BED 3 MASTER BEDROOM WC LDRY ENTRY BATH smart bits Products used to enhance this project include: > brickwork -- Boral/PGH > floor finishes: tiles -- Rivoland carpet -- Lemon's Carpets > garage door -- WR Engineering > kitchen -- Kitchen Link > fittings -- Har vey Norman Commercial > windows -- Boral > concrete -- Elvin Group > plasterboard -- Boral > fences -- Steve & John Fencing > electricals -- Southside Electrical/Modern Electrical/Greenwood Energy. A KEY STRATEGY TO USING RESOURCES EFFICIENTLY WAS INNOVATIVE THINKING RIGHT FROM THE START ABOVE: Variety in materials and room dimensions was deliberately limited to minimise waste and keep costs down.