Photo: South Australian Government, reproduced with permission.
Imagine an area in Adelaide for people to live, work and play, which has been designed specifically to leave the smallest carbon footprint on the environment.
The launch of the first Adelaide Living Laboratory (ALL) program is seeing such a precinct being developed in Tonsley, together with similar sites at Lochiel Park and Bowden.
As a living, thriving research hub, the multi-purpose development at Tonsley – covering 60 hectares and due to be completed in 2018 – is expected to bring real-time knowledge to developers, builders and planners, informing the way residential and industrial premises can be created and put to use with minimal carbon emissions.
Dr Robert Crocker, Acting Director of the UniSA Zero Waste SA Research Centre for Sustainable Design and Behaviour, is one of the lead researchers involved in the ALL program, which comprises a partnership between the South Australian Government and the Cooperative Research Centre for Low Carbon Living (CRCLCL), of which UniSA is a key member.
Dr Crocker explains that a living lab can be a precinct, a building or an industrial development in which it is possible to measure, assess and evaluate the processes which create and sustain a low carbon environment.
“It involves an exploration of emerging usages, behaviours and market opportunities, experimentation with living scenarios within communities of users, and an ongoing evaluation and assessment of what is progressively learnt in the precinct or development,” he says.