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From energy conservation to waste management, from waterway management to native fauna and flora preservation, every step of design and construction at Little Mountain Campus has worked to deliver sustainability.
Executive Director Services Bryan Mason said that the project has demonstrated a number of measurable sustainability outcomes including some in excess of current statutory requirements.
“More than five years of planning and delivery will come to fruition when the first stage of this integrated campus opens in February next year with a 96 bed residential aged care facility, home and community care service, and a community and aquatic centre. Once in operation, sustainability will continue to be important,” he said.
“We have taken an environmentally friendly approach to the whole construction but more than this, we have emphasised community collaboration, local employment and public and active transport options. It’s a far-reaching vision to develop a cohesive, flourishing community.”
Green initiatives at Little Mountain Campus in the building phase delivered by NCM on our request included reducing energy demand through installation of a solar photovoltaic system on the auditorium roof. This reduces grid power consumption by about 10% - an estimated saving of between $15,000 and $25,000 annually.
There is also a solar hot water system on the plant deck which will save approximately 75 - 85% of hot water requirements to the residential areas of the facility.
The air conditioning system in the aged care service can provide a degree of free cooling or heating and increase efficiency. This happens when one room requires cooling and another
at the same time requires heating.
The bedroom windows have inbuilt switches that communicate with the air conditioning ensuring it is turned off automatically when windows are opened.
The ensuite bathrooms are ventilated by a heat recovery ventilation system that introduces fresh air at the same rate as the exhausted air. This fresh air is preconditioned by the exhausted air - either pre-cooled or pre-heated depending on season - at an efficiency of 70%.
In waste management, all construction waste was recycled or re-used via a waste transfer station and where feasible, all steel, metal and masonry waste was sorted on site for recycling.
During the tree clearing and early site preparation, an elder from the local Kabi Kabi people was present to ensure nothing of indigenous importance was disturbed or destroyed, while a fauna catcher/spotter was employed so that no animals would be harmed.
An arborist consulted to the project on local tree health; the overall aim was to keep as much existing native vegetation as possible. Vegetation that was approved for clearance was retained for mulch and re-use in landscaping.
During the earthworks phase, the project team installed extensive protection devices to prevent silt and other contaminants entering the waterway. They kept the use of imported materials to a low level, also reducing truck activity, by reconditioning and re-using site soils.
As part of the plan to achieve a net increase in habitat, a native ecosystem is now well established on site, attracting many birds, kangaroos and other animals. This was achieved by completing the detention basins early on in the program. The basins act as a vegetation corridor that slow and filter the water as it flows downstream.
These initiatives have developed a site-responsive Little Mountain Integrated Community Facility. This will enable elderly residents to remain in their community and receive appropriate levels of care. It will also allow the community to share use of the brand new facilities including a 25 metre x 20 metre lap pool and smaller learn to swim pool, a café, large auditorium, smaller multi-purpose rooms and a hair salon.
A community advisory group will be established by Campus Coordinator Ryan Salzke.
The campus includes a number of features encouraging public and active transport such as a public bus stop built on the road near the campus entry, servicing nearby homes as well as campus residents, good pedestrian pathways and capacity for parking 20 bicycles on site.
It will also create sustainable job opportunities. The services on campus will employ more than 100 Sunshine Coast locals when fully operational.
Visit our new developments page to find out more about Little Mountain Campus.