Latest News
HomeAustralia & N.ZealandThe quest for sustainable native timber to build a new convention centre
Melbourne Convention Centre

The quest for sustainable native timber to build a new convention centre

As part of achieving a ‘6 Star Green Star’ certification for the new Melbourne Convention Centre, Plenary Group and its construction contractor Brookfield Multiplex, needed to source a forest that was able to supply sustainable Australian native timber to cover 8500 square metres of ceiling and wall panelling…

Melbourne Convention CentreAs part of achieving a ‘6 Star Green Star’ certification for the new Melbourne Convention Centre, Plenary Group and its construction contractor Brookfield Multiplex, needed to source a forest that was able to supply sustainable Australian native timber to cover 8500 square metres of ceiling and wall panelling.

The timber had to be Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified and the designers, together with industry experts, found themselves heading north, just inland from Newcastle, northern New South Wales, where Eucalyptus Maculata, otherwise known as spotted gum, is grown more prevalently in conditions which comply with FSC standards.

FSC is an international not-for-profit organisation devoted to guarantee the responsible management of the world’s forests. Its stringent chain-of-custody regulations ensure that from the raw materials in the forest, all the way to the consumer – the entire supply chain – is involved in the certification process.

Brookfield Multiplex design manager Simeon Lloyd has been working on the project for the past 18 months. One of his tasks was to source the FSC certified timber. ‘The FSC logo guarantees that the timber you’re buying is from the sustainable, well managed forest that it’s supposed to be from,’ says Simeon.

‘Eighteen months ago there was very little FSC certified timber in Australia, so one of the challenges was to source the timber within Australia and not have to import it from overseas. We used a very small number of trees in the end, with a total of 56 native trees being made into veneer panels to cover 8500 square metres of finished product.’

Plenary Group’s Peter Endall has been leading the multidisciplinary team from Plenary, Brookfield Multiplex and Advanced Environmental, that achieved the 6 Star Green Star rating.

‘We needed to achieve a total of 75 points from the Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) to have the new Melbourne Convention Centre rated as 6 Star Green Star,’
said  Peter. ‘Part of those points needed to be generated by using FSC certified timber.

‘The tender brief specified that we must achieve a GBCA 4 Star Green Star rating which represents ‘Best Practice’. Plenary wanted to do better than this and while a 5 Star Green Star certification acknowledges ‘Australian Excellence’, we made a commitment from the outset to achieve a 6 Star Green Star certified rating which recognises a ‘World Leader’,’ Peter said.

The GBCA developed the Green Star rating tool to measure, recognise and reward environmental leadership in the building industry. Each Green Star covers a number of categories which are divided into credits, with points awarded for each credit obtained. There are nine categories within the Green Star rating including:  tools, management; indoor environment quality; energy; transport; water; materials; land use and ecology; emissions and innovation.

Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre chief executive Leigh Harry says, ‘The 6 Star Green Star accreditation reflects the centre’s commitment to an environmentally sustainable business and industry.

‘The new Melbourne Convention Centre will not only be exceptional in its appearance but will be one of the most impressive architectural and environmental buildings in Australia.’

Each year, Industry Capability Network (ICN) Victoria recognises and awards companies for their outstanding contributions to local industry.

In 2007, Brookfield Multiplex picked up the Victorian Industry Participation Policy (VIPP) Award for maximising local content in the development of the new Melbourne Convention Centre.

As well, the Laminex Group was the winner in the 2007 Large Company category for developing a new FSC certified timber veneer product for the new Melbourne Convention Centre to achieve ‘world class’ environmental standards with the assistance of ICN.

Co-Founder & Managing Director - Travel Media Applications | + Articles

Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.

23/02/2024
22/02/2024
21/02/2024
20/02/2024
19/02/2024
16/02/2024