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Green Smart Magazine : GreenSmart 2010
environmentally responsible housing is unique,' he says. 'It makes Crace one of the leaders in the ACT and the rest of the country for green design and innovation.' For the lucky people who camped overnight to secure some of the earliest released lots, those first new homes are now taking shape -- and subsequent sales have been strong. Since the first homes were released more than 12 months ago, Crace has recorded strong sales. 'The terraces in particular were snapped up, largely due to the first homebuyer's grants,' Ian Dawkins says. 'It has really exceeded all expectation. ' HIA is delighted with the role it has played in the accreditation of Crace, says Stuart Collins, and it will continue to promote environmentally responsible housing through a program of voluntary compliance. Crace will soon be home to thousands of twenty-first century early settlers -- in keeping with its rich heritage. gs water tanks, and Crace also offers a 'green package' that allows buyers to add more sustainability features. Even more importantly, Crace will be the first housing development in Australia to comprehensively assess the amount of carbon dioxide that will be released into the atmosphere during its design and construction. To offset any unavoidable carbon emissions during this phase, Greening Australia will plant trees as part of a revegetation project in south-west Western Australia's Gondwana Link. 'The market response has shown that environment issues are top-of-mind and our carbon offsetting program is one of the most innovative achievements in that sense,' Ian says. Crace also provides a vital response to affordability challenges in Canberra, by providing more appropriate housing to first homebuyers and investors. In keeping with the ACT government's Affordable Housing Action Plan, Crace will sell at least 15 per cent of house and land packages under the housing affordability threshold that currently sits at a touch more than $300,000. Stuart Collins, executive director of HIA's ACT and southern NSW region, says the project is a great example of green and affordable housing. 'This combination of affordable housing options and Emma Wheaton was driving to work one Friday morning in Canberra when she noticed a handful of people in a queue at the Crace estate site. 'We had wanted to purchase a property in Crace's first release, but I wasn't expecting a line-up the day before. I had to get the day off work so that we could camp out,' she says. Emma just missed the first release at 6am on Saturday to the 25 people before her, but had first pick for the second release. Now, she and her partner will move into their brand new two-bedroom terrace in Crace's urban precinct in March 2011. Chosen mainly for its location -- just 9km to the city -- the couple's apartment also represents the ability for first homebuyers to secure affordable housing -- at around $300,000. 'It allows us to get out of the rental market and live the way we want to live. Crace is a fantastic starting point,' Emma says. Emma also chose Crace for its GreenSmart accreditation, and paid extra to orient her apartment north-south, so all of her windows face the sun. 'I know all about GreenSmart, and it will significantly lower my heating and cooling bills,' she says. She also appreciates the broader benefits of Crace, particularly the suburb's extensive water system designed to catch stormwater. a fantastic starting point BIO-RETENTION RAIN GARDENS AND SPECIAL TREE PITS ON THE STREET [WILL SLOW DOWN WATER RUN-OFF AND] HELP THE STREET VEGETATION AND OPEN SPACES greensmart 2010 53