A combination of government leadership and private investment is now needed to deliver the Christchurch people’s vision of a green city, says the New Zealand Green Building Council (NZGBC) in response to the announcement of the newly established Christchurch Central Development Unit (CCDU).
“It was encouraging to hear Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee acknowledge that the people of Christchurch want a ‘green’ city.
A sustainable city offers long term reductions in infrastructure costs, healthy productive environments for tenants to occupy, protection of Canterbury’s precious water resources and a reduced carbon footprint for the city,” says Ms Cutler.
“We are excited about the opportunity for the new CCDU to maximise the potential for the built environment to deliver the ‘green’ vision for the garden city.”
“Christchurch has already shown green building leadership in New Zealand with the 6 Green Star – Office Design and Built certified Te Hononga - Civic Building, along with eight other certified Green Star buildings,” she says.
To create a level playing field for the rebuild, NZGBC have developed an introductory-level green building assessment tool specifically for the Christchurch Central City called BASE (Building a Sustainable Environment).
BASE can help Christchurch building owners and investors deliver green buildings for between 0.5% and 1.3% capital cost, with a payback period of between 2.4 and 11.4 years, depending on the building size.
“We hope the vision for a green city will be built into the very foundations of the design and construction of the urban environment.
This is a great opportunity for Christchurch planners and investors to think long term and build the city back sustainably and cost-effectively through great design, sustainable materials, efficient services and renewable energy sources.“
Further information about the value case for BASE in Canterbury
Quantity Surveyors Davis Langdon analysed cost impacts for building to BASE standards, by taking a small (1500m2) and a medium sized (3750m2) Christchurch building and modelling how BASE would affect the construction cost plan.
Davis Langdon found that an approximate $50,000 capital investment is required to build to BASE criteria, representing an investment of 1.3% of build cost for the small building example and 0.5% for the medium sized building.
Engineering firm Beca then analysed the energy savings resulting from BASE initiatives. The results showed that for a 1,5000m2 building, the estimated energy savings is between $4,388 and $8,424 per year (depending on a number of variables such as energy costs, services installed, etc). This translates to a simple payback period of 5.9 – 11.4 years on a 1,5000m2 building. For a 3,7500m2 building, the estimated energy savings is between $10,969 and $21,060 per year, which would have a simple payback period of 2.4 - 4.6 years (depending on the variables).