Wollongong City Council achieved Australia’s first 5 Star Green Star Performance rating from the Green Building Council of Australia in 2015. Additional upgrades resulted in the building achieving a 6 Star Green Star Performance rating in June 2019.
As a result of upgrades over the course of 15 years, Wollongong Council achieved Australia’s first 5 Star Green Star Performance rating from the Green Building Council of Australia in 2015.
Despite this achievement Council continued to find ways to further improve the building’s efficiency and provide a high quality indoor environment for council staff and visitors.
This work resulted in the building achieving a 6 Star Green Star Performance rating in June 2019.
One of the improvements implemented was the installation of Eagle Lighting Australia’s Indigo Maestro Beta luminaire—a tuneable and efficient lighting system—paired with the advanced wireless lighting control of Organic Response.
The building’s previous lighting system [T5] was unable to be tuned and the lighting levels were inconsistent across different areas on each floor of the building.
Council worked with NDY Light to look at options that would meet the building’s operational requirements, deliver increased efficiency and reduce maintenance.
The analysis resulted in the Council selecting the Indigo Maestro Beta luminaires and pair this with the innovative integrated Organic Response lighting controls.
THE ECONOMICS OF IT
Between 2015 and 2018 Council was able to reduce the building’s energy intensity by a further 10 percent. The building is now 64 per cent more efficient resulting in a reduction of 1,760 tonnes of Carbon Dioxide emissions each year.
Since 2017 the installation of Indigo Maestro Beta luminaires and Organic Response lighting controls the building has reduced its annual consumption of electricity by more than 200,000kWh and subsequent full fuel emissions fell by 184 tonnes.
In further savings the lights are only operating at 40 to 50 per cent of their rated outputs, which will increase their longevity.
Had electricity consumption not been reduced below its 2007-08 levels Council would be paying an estimated $250,000 more each year for electricity.
Water efficiency measures such as water tanks and efficient fixtures are saving about $30,000 per year. Both of these electricity and water savings are significant as they have helped Council to maintain its overall financial sustainability and its capacity to re-invest these funds in projects and services that benefit the community.
Innovation played a significant role in the 6 Star certification, with 9 out of the available 10 innovation points being awarded. Innovation points were awarded for management practices and technological solutions.
For example, the Organic Response controls system enables the lights to be tuned in line with Australian standards and to meet each individual’s medical requirements.
The luminaries comprising Organic Responses Sensor Technology, which are inclusive of soft wiring, afforded a speedy deployment. The Organic Response intuitive app made for simple and fast configuration of settings. The OIC (Occupancy Information Cloud) makes the system intelligent and scalable.
By using fewer materials such as wiring, this solution reduced the overall waste generated as part of the installation. With the simplicity of the ORT solution, there was no need for specialist system integrators. This significantly reduces the ongoing costs associated with maintenance.
The installation team from Stowe Australia were able to achieve diversion rates of about 80 per cent for the project. This equates to more than 7.5 tonnes of demolition and construction waste being recycled.
Diversion rates of this building waste were possible due to recyclable packaging, integrated control sensor and reduced wiring required using the Indigo Maestro Beta luminaires and Organic Response lighting controls.
A BRIGHT FUTURE
The attainment of the 6 Star Green Star Performance rating is not the end of the story but marks the start of a new chapter for the Council’s Administration Building.
The Indigo Maestro Beta luminaires with Organic Response lighting controls will be installed in the building’s public areas over the next 12 months. These will further increase the building’s efficiency without compromising lighting requirements.
Council is now incorporating the technologies and management strategies into other building projects to reduce their energy and water consumption.
For example, the OR technology is being installed in community centres to improve the building’s functionality and adaptability along with reducing environmental impacts.
The efficiency gains, the enhanced cleaning and maintenance practices in the building, improved waste management practices, consumable materials used, building tuning and commissioning and ongoing environmental management strategies will ensure that the environmental impacts of the Administration building is minimised into the future.
It was a significant achievement by all parties involved in demonstrating that old buildings when managed well can be just as high performing as purpose-built environmentally sustainable buildings without the need to completely rebuild or strip out ageing systems.