Unit A, B and C

Kate Fitzgerald of Whispering Smith designed the three buildings with consideration to sustainability right from day one therefore getting the buildings to achieve eToolLCD Gold was pretty straight forward. The lot has been subdivided into three which improves the functionality of the land by increasing the occupancy per square meter. Unit B which is an existing building on the lot has been mostly retained but renovated and extended with sustainable systems and features while unit A & C are new-builds using a mix of recycled brick and timber to reduce the amount of concrete used.

  • Date: August 2015
  • Client: Kate Fitzgerald
  • Architect: Whispering Smith
  • Location: Scarborough, Western Australia

Results Summary

Unit A

Impact AreaTotal CO2e / Year / occupant (kg CO2e)% Saved Against BenchmarkeTool Medal
Embodied Carbon1,276-34 %No Medal small
Operational Carbon-1,634152 %Platinum_medal
Total Carbon-358109 %

Unit B

Impact AreaTotal CO2e / Year / occupant (kg CO2e)% Saved Against BenchmarkeTool Medal
Embodied Carbon84111 %etool_bronze_medal
Operational Carbon-848127 %Platinum_medal
Total Carbon-6100 %

Unit C

Impact AreaTotal CO2e / Year / occupant (kg CO2e)% Saved Against BenchmarkeTool Medal
Embodied Carbon9470 %etool_bronze_medal
Operational Carbon-866127 %Platinum_medal
Total Carbon8198 %

Project Features

Design life

The design life for the three buildings has been predicted to be 80 years, taking into consideration suburb redevelopment pressures, occupancy rates, ownership and building design quality.


The amount of concrete used in the buildings has been reduced thanks to the high amount of recycled brick and timber that has specified. Further reductions have been achieved with a 50% fly-ash blend concrete mix. Finishes have also been carefully selected to reduce the amount of maintenance and replacement required, such as polished concrete finishes and recycled timber.

Operational Energy

Life-cycle operational energy of the buildings have been significantly reduced due to improvements in energy efficiency features and lower carbon sources.

Energy efficiency improvement features such as building integrated energy monitoring, high efficiency lighting, low-flow shower heads, well ventilated refrigeration cabinetry, solar hot water systems, ceiling fans, internal drying lines and improved thermal performance (more than 6 stars NatHERS rating) have been specified for all three buildings.

No air-conditioning systems are required due to the high thermal performance of the buildings. Additional thermal comfort in summer and winter will be easily met with ceiling fans and wood pellet heaters.

Further electricity savings have been achieved with specifying non-electrical appliances such as gas cooking, gas boost for the solar hot water system and wood pellet burners for winter heating.

Renewable Energy Generation

Solar PV panels have been installed for all three buildings (5kW, 6kW and 6kW respectively) which generate more renewable energy than the buildings consume. The exported renewable energy helped to offset the embodied energy of the building thus providing a very low life-cycle carbon outcome, if not carbon positive as is the case for Unit A and B.

Additional Features

The buildings also save mains water with rainwater collection tanks that are plumbed into the laundry, bathroom and toilets.

This assessment was conducted by Fei.