UPDATED 2 March 2017 – Developments on government-owned land in NSW will be carbon neutral, water positive and zero waste if a draft strategy by urban transformation agency UrbanGrowth NSW is adopted.

The Draft Sustainability Strategy was released ahead of news that the state government is considering splitting the agency in two – one part to deliver land releases and the other to target urban development.

According to Fairfax Media the move is a response to delays in delivering major urban redevelopment projects such as the Bays Precincts and along Parramatta Road – which in turn are understood to be the result of delays in other parts of government to deliver on transport plans.

The sustainability strategy sets out 31 targets for sustainable development on land within the agency’s delivery control – both greenfield and urban transformation.

“Our delivery partners, such as developers, will need to meet our targets, which will be clearly established during Expressions of Interest or tender phases, and embedded into our delivery contracts,” acting chief executive Michael Brodie said.

Key environmental sustainability targets include:

  • all new projects modelled to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 50 per cent against 2016 levels
  • all new projects to get 50 per cent of energy from renewables
  • office and hotel developments have NABERS Energy ratings of 5.5 or above, with retail to get 5 star NABERS Energy ratings or above
  • a minimum 50 per cent reduction in forecast mains potable water demand for all new projects
  • office and retail developments to achieve NABERS water rating of 5 or above, and 5.5 star NABERS for hotels
  • all projects will have minimum 5 Star Green Star As Built and Communities ratings
  • all new projects will divert a minimum of 95 per cent construction waste from landfill
  • all construction timber will be Forest Stewardship Council-certified or equivalent

Aside from “climate, resilience and resources” targets, there are also a number of other targets around the themes of “healthy and inclusive places”, “productive cities” and “accountability and collaboration”.

Some of these targets include car dependence reduction of 80 per cent of inner-city congestion and 50 per cent of Greater Sydney congestion; 20 per cent of all new housing designed and built to Livable Housing Australia Silver certification; and all developments to incorporate high-speed broadband and free wifi in open spaces.

“Our aim is to create innovative and productive urban places with world class liveability, resilience, inclusion, affordability and environmental quality,” senior manager of sustainability Lauren Kajewski said.

“The 31 sustainability targets will lead to greater water and energy efficiency, reduced waste, innovation, less car dependency and higher liveability across Sydney.”

UrbanGrowth said the targets were aligned to global commitments including the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and New Urban Agenda, the COP21 Paris Agreement and the 100 Resilient Cities initiative.

“Our new targets will be monitored annually to ensure they remain at, or exceed, industry leading standards,” Mr Brodie said.

“We want to create a legacy of sustainable places for future generations in NSW.”

Feedback is being sought until 7 May 2017.

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