THE HEART OF THE CITY BEATS WITH A POSITIVE VISION FOR THE FUTURE
Fed Square – the significant public centre of Melbourne – has long had a commitment to environmental sustainability. Hosting more than 2000 events per year and attracting around 10 million visitors annually, Fed Square has faced a range of unique environmental challenges. With a focused internal team working on innovative solutions to some complex challenges, their efforts have recently been recognised by this country’s foremost facility awards, the Facilities Management Awards for Excellence 2016 presented by the Facility Management Association of Australia.
Taking home two of the eight awards, the Fed Square team won the Occupant Safety & Wellbeing Award for their Online OH&S Warden Training initiative, and the Sustainability & Environmental Impact Award for their Carbon Neutral achievement. Clearly great results for Fed Square’s passionate team of environmental experts, led by Sharon Pollard, General Manager Operations, and worthy recognition of their long-term commitment to environmental sustainability.
Fed Square’s environmental achievements are the result of years of dedication to a sustainability management plan focused on the areas of water, waste and energy. To this end, a number of key steps have been taken by the Fed Square team to achieve carbon neutrality in 2015 and become a sustainable public precinct including:
- Water saving initiatives including installation of sensor taps in public toilets; an upgrade of cooling towers; installation of 85 water tanks to hold rainwater; installation of a 40,000 litre tank that catches stormwater from the main plaza; diligent monitoring of water usage by the Operations Team, allowing for deep understanding of water patterns and their ability to move with agility should something appear amiss, saving millions of litres of water per year
- A rain garden that filters runoff from the carpark, removing pollutants and heavy metals from flowing into the Yarra River
- Major mechanical initiatives including a co-generation plant, a bio-gas plant and an air conditioning control strategy, all of which have assisted in achieving carbon neutrality in 2015
- Installation of 10 beehives on the roof of the Australian Centre for Moving Image in partnership with Melbourne City Rooftop Honey that is the largest apiary in Melbourne, producing an excess of 350 kilograms of honey annually
These results have come about through close collaboration with tenancies, partners and public stakeholders. For instance, via their partnership with Siemens, Fed Square continues to measure and verify the monthly energy savings generated by the co-generation plant and the introduction of solar cells.
However, the Fed Square team see their role as more than just being environmentally sustainable. They continue to drive behavioral change within the team and beyond, by driving the climate change message via a range of curated events. Each year the site is host to the Sustainable Living Festival, Earth Hour and a range of activities including clothing exchanges, architectural forums and environmental exhibitions. Fed Square also recently hosted part of the Ideaction 2016 conference, inviting other Facility Managers to experience the initiatives firsthand via a comprehensive guided tour behind the scenes.
Fed Square’s CEO, Jonathan Tribe said, “Since the beginning of planning for Fed Square in 1999, our commitment to building impressive environmental credentials and undertaking effective initiatives that deliver an impact, has been paramount. For fifteen years, Fed Square has been at the forefront of unique and innovative environmental practices and these two awards recognise our team’s sustained efforts. Our future vision is to go one step further, and achieve ‘carbon negative’ status and whilst challenging, I believe we have the team, expertise and passion to make it happen. Watch this space.”
For more information about Fed Square’s sustainability achievement and initiatives, head to:
For a ‘behind the scenes’ tour, head to:
For more information about Facilities Management Australia go to: