Melbourne’s Margaret Court Arena has become Australia’s first sports and entertainment centre to gain a LEED Gold rating, awarded under the US Green Building Council’s green rating system.

Lendlease were awarded the tender for the $180 million redevelopment of Margaret Court Arena, and incorporated a number of sustainability initiatives, including:

  • energy efficient lighting and airconditioning systems
  • operable roof allowing airconditioning and lighting systems to be reduced when conditions are favourable
  • reuse of existing structures
  • water efficient fittings
  • sustainably sourced timber
  • recycling of waste generated in construction
  • a cool roof, which reflects the sun’s heat
  • shading overhangs that block summer sun but allow winter sun
  • rainwater flushed toilets that are connected to the site-wide water harvesting system

A spokeswoman for Lendlease told The Fifth Estate that client Melbourne & Olympic Parks had requested a LEED rating over a local tool like Green Star because of the international recognition LEED has, which was important due to the arena attracting an international crowd.


Sustainability was a key focus for the development, which project architect Ralph Wheeler said aimed to set “a new standard in sustainability for sports venues throughout Australia”.

The court, which is well-known for being used during the Australian Open, also operates as a popular live music location.

“We’re very proud of the fact MCA is the first sport and entertainment arena in Australia to receive this level of LEED certification,” Melbourne & Olympic Parks chief executive Brian Morris said.

“The new venue has been warmly received by the Melbourne public and we’re delighted it’s been recognised for its sustainable initiatives.

“This is now Melbourne & Olympic Parks’ second LEED certification, which demonstrates our commitment to sustainable practices and our intention to make the precinct one of the most sustainable sports and entertainment hubs in the world.”


Joe Kokai, general manager of Lendlease’s building business in Victoria, said the “collaborative spirit and innovative thinking” of project partners made the achievement possible.

“This achievement provides an excellent endorsement for industry to the push the boundaries and drive continual improvement and accountability in sustainable design, construction, maintenance and operations,” he said.

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  1. LEED ‘Gold’ (not ‘Platinum’) aces Green Star to promote MC Arena to a global audience. Any plans to seek other performance ratings ie for the Rod Laver Arena or the entire precinct? That could be a Grand Slam winner globally and help to lob over the political players in Canberra.

  2. There are tremendous opportunities to embed much higher levels of sustainability into sports and entertainment venues in Australia so it is great to see significant progress in this direction for not only MCA but also across the Melbourne Park precinct. Recognition should also go to Major Projects Victoria which had a strong vision for sustainable outcomes from the outset and for Aurecon who designed the structures and building services, and also managed the LEED certification process.