Whilst companies that handle timber flooring in Sydney may be a bit disappointed that they lost to Melbourne, they still had plenty of reasons to celebrate, as they, and the other leaders of construction, development and architecture in Australia were celebrated at the Good Design Awards.
For the Best Commercial and Residential Architecture Award was awarded to Melbourne’s Nightingale housing project, a mixed-use development with a triple bottom line housing model that its developers aimed at ensuring social, economic and environmental sustainability.
In a period where Australia is embracing this trifecta, from timber flooring in Sydney, to construction in Melbourne, the judges looked to the development and saw it as an exemplar of sustainability via good design. Notably, the development doesn’t rely on developers for funding, instead getting their funding from a small group of ethical investors, which allowed the architects to focus on quality and sustainability instead of profit margins.
According to Dr. Brandon Gien, Good Design Australia’s CEO, the development was chosen was thanks to its systems approach; on how this development can potentially transform the architecture and development process, not only in Australia, but across the world.
The project was, appropriately, in the company of the 60th Good Design Australia awards, hosted at the Sydney Opera, and presented by Jan Utzon, son of JornUtzon, responsible for designing the famous Sydney landmark’s white sails.
The PwC Sydney Client Collaboration Floors, at Barangaroo Tower 1, managed to win the Best in Class for Interior Design. The foul level design with interconnecting stairs, with an open design aimed at redesigning the traditional “boardroom” design. The judges say that it’s a great example of design excellence, a brilliant example of what good design can do to impact businesses.
For Best in Class for Urban Design, the Sydney Park Water Re-Use Project won the award. Commissioned by the City Council, the project is aimed at overcoming the sustainability challenges that will come in with Sydney’s population growing as it is. Covering 10% of Alexandria, it’s now the city’s largest water-harvesting project, diverting 840 megalitres of storm water annually for the city to treat and reuse. Not only that, the park also improves local biodiversity and recreational activities.
The judges say that it’s a fine example of integrating water treatment, engineering, public art and wayfinding, and recreation into a single development.
Dr. Gien, says that good design is about removing anything that’s superfluous, creating something that is beautiful in its simplest form.