Brisbane bee man Jack Stone, from Bee One Third, has installed four hives atop the Westpac Bank building in Boundary Street as part of the greening phase of the West Village development.
The project recently received the highest rating for master-planned precincts in Australia, earning “World Leadership” status with the achievement of Six Star Green Star – Communities certification.
Green Star is the Green Building Council of Australia’s (GBCA) internationally recognised rating system that delivers independent verification of sustainable outcomes throughout the life cycle of the built environment.
West Village Project Director Andrew Thompson said many of the project’s green innovations were inspired by world leading practices used by the project’s developer, Sekisui House, in Japan.
“West Village is Sekisui House’s first inner-city, master planned project in Queensland and it embodies the company’s core development principals of environmental consciousness, respect for history, reverence for community and delivering places that last for generations and improve with time,” Mr Thompson said.
“Most importantly, West Village physically embraces the Sekisui House philosophy of satoyama, which means ‘ribbons of green’.
“It speaks to the Japanese belief that humans and nature benefit each other and, on the ground at West Village, this will see more than 10,000 plants installed in our parks, gardens and rooftops.
“We set out to develop a project that represents real village living – a vibrant, integrated residential community – and our achievement of World Leadership status is critical to that”.
Sekisui House has been building sustainable, innovative communities for decades and has constructed more net-zero-energy homes than any other company in the world (more than 31,000 in Japan since 2013).
At West Village, the four new bee hives, that will each house about 40,000 bees, are contributing to a suite of “green installations” taking place over the next few months.
The first West Village honey harvest is expected in October this year and the project hopes to collect a total of about 160kg from three harvests every year.
The bees will eventually visit the flowered areas being planted throughout West Village, but will fly up to 5km in search of food. And Bee One Third’s experience is that the local honey contains local pollens which can help with hayfever and allergies.
Some of the other green initiatives which contributed to West Village’s Six Star Green Star rating include:
• 100% of energy to site will be carbon offset through an embedded network
• 100% of organic waste from food retail diverted from landfill and instead recycled into biofuels and compost
• A food rescue partnership and dedicated cold room that will see excess perishable food donated to local charities
• One of Australia’s largest car share systems for a residential project, with 10 GoGet car share pods
• 1600 bike racks, plus end of trip facilities
• Electric vehicle charging stations around the site, including for Tesla vehicles
• A 50Kl/day grey water recycling plant will use water discharged from hand basins and showers for landscape irrigation – essentially “drought-proofing” the extensive gardens and public spaces
• A shared community garden will feature herbs, bush foods and native plants
• All public realm lighting will use LEDs