Environmentally Sustainable Design Student Workshop

On Thursday 19 July 2018, the New Student Precinct Project invited current students to participate in a two-hour sustainability-focused workshop with sustainability consultants, Aurecon.

The objective of the workshop was to build on the key sustainability principles for the Precinct confirmed in 2017 and capture student’s aspirations for their sustainable Precinct.

Student’s enthusiasm for the workshop was quickly evident with available places filled within 24 hours of registrations opening.  The overwhelming response continued to the workshop with passionate and constructive conversation, expectations and ideas raised, including:

  • the importance of connecting with and representing the cultural diversity of all University of Melbourne students
  • how can we design with cyclists and pedestrians in mind?
  • how can we reuse existing materials and reduce waste?
  • Students would like to see rooftop gardens and lots of planting in general
  • can we, and how do we, completely eliminate the use of disposable coffee cups?
  • How do we make sustainability visible in the New Student Precinct to educate people on how they can live a more sustainable lifestyle?

This last point in particular generated some creative thinking with a favourite suggestion being an onsite gym that generates electricity; the faster people run on the treadmill, the brighter the lights shine.

The overwhelming response of the attendees meant time ran short in the workshop to discuss all the student’s thoughts, perspectives and ideas on how to create a sustainable precinct that would support them in achieving their own ecologically sustainable lifestyle. Keen to ensure we captured the breadth of the student’s responses, the Project Team followed up the workshop with a survey to attendees. The results of the workshop and survey have been captured in Aurecon’s workshop report to be incorporated into the New Student Precinct’s sustainability principles and design.