The Commonwealth Bank has expanded its green loan portfolio with a $130 million splash towards a landmark sustainable build-to-rent (BTR) block in Sydney. 

An initiative of Investa-owned BTR management platform, Indi, the development is pushing for a 5 Star Green Star rating and aims to be carbon neutral in operation.

Investa and Indi partner, Oxford Properties, worked with CBA to develop a tailored Green Financing Framework that articulates the use and management of proceeds in line with the globally-recognised Green Loan Principles (GLP).

“BTR properties will play a key part in Australia’s future,” said Andrew Hinchliff, group executive of institutional banking and markets at CBA. 

“As our nation grows and evolves the way Australians live, work and play is changing and people will be seeking new, more flexible modes of living that can put them closer to their jobs.”

The 234-apartment CBD development will embed sustainability throughout its design, construction and operation, including materials choice, onsite renewable generation, and rainwater reuse, the developers say, with the building aiming for a Basix Energy rating of 30 per cent.

Oxford Properties Group director development Nellie O’Keeffe, said the Green Loan was enabling the partners to deliver “one of the most sustainable places to live in Sydney.”

Other sustainability initiatives include:

  • Regenerative lifts that capture heat generated by elevators during use and convert it into reusable energy for the building, delivering 20 per cent to 25 per cent improvements to lift energy efficiency
  • High-efficiency central cooling system and tempered airconditioning which disables cooling and heating in common areas when outdoor conditions are favourable, to provide thermal comfort to occupants
  • Provision of energy and water efficient appliances to all apartments
  • Sub-metering for improved tracking of operational performance

General manager of corporate sustainability at Investa, Margot Black said the company had been focused on “diversifying its sources of debt and supporting the growth of the sustainable finance market in Australia” since closing its first green loan in 2019.

“The successful development of a Green Financing Framework with Oxford, and the execution of the first green loan for the Indi platform under this Framework, is a significant achievement for all parties,” she said.

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