Daily Archives: May 21, 2009

How green is the plastic lunch box?

Tremendously exciting this week to learn that Carisbrook Stadium Trust is putting up a fence and has plans to start work on piling tomorrow.

In times well past, CST posted (piled?) the following “loose talk” on its website. There have been NO UPDATES to further tempt our interest or attract educated critique of the green and sustainable building approaches being employed…

Environmentally sustainable design (ESD)

Listed below are only some of the proposed ideas which the designers are considering to ensure the building is as environmentally sustainable as possible. As the team move into the detailed design phase these options will become clearer and greater certainty will be provided

ESD options which the designers are considering include:

Harvesting rainwater, and potentially greywater, for irrigation and toilet flushing
Solar hot water heating
Increased insulation to occupied conditional spaces
Use of materials with low embodied energy and emissions where possible
Public transportation initiatives and traffic management planning to reduce car usage.
Selection of mechanical and electrical systems to conserve energy
Natural ventilation at concourse level and back of the house areas where possible
Low energy lighting internally and externally

CST Link

In the company of our What if? contacts and posters, what can we find out about CST’s ‘sustainability’ project?

Firstly, we know every premise establishing the need for the stadium project is completely faulty and vacuous. A no-go zone that’s bigger than any fence… It’s not a good start on the road to sustainability for any (ratepayer funded) capital works project to be based on errant local body politics and a consortium of privateers out for themselves. That is not sustainable. That is not ‘community’. That is not long-term regional well-being, in mind.


OK. Small incidental questions as we build a fence…

How will site contamination be handled – what’s to test, what’s to handle? As for demolition of existing buildings… What’s happening to the asbestos? Where are the demolition materials going, will they be recycled for use? Where will any spoil from site preparation end up – recycled for use back on site or at a new location?

Literally, $millions of questions but all we have so far is the fence.


Dunedin City Council – in the sustainability stakes, you’re responsible for leading by professional example. We’re optimists and expect this much of you…although it’s utterly doubtful you can handle the challenge in a meaningful coherent way since you opted to finance an UNSUSTAINABLE project with ratepayer funds and hastily prioritised it over a glaring lack of other ideas at council to stimulate local ‘health and wealth’.


What does the council expect of CST in terms of sustainable building approaches… Major hindrance: the council can’t see the whole stadium concept is UNSUSTAINABLE – that’s a given. Nevertheless we’ll waste our breath, and needle this.

We expect SMART scientific approaches and best practice methods. The government’s Green Star system should be your guide, based on international practice and accreditation standards – the likes of which are evolving for New Zealand.

Because these are not the Dark Ages.


Terrifying then – NOW – that CST is about to deliver a new stadium to Dunedin utilising an old copied idea, a hugely unsuccessful idea for regional ‘economic development’.

That is, CST is bent on stumping up with an UNSUSTAINABLE 24/7 MENACE to the people of Otago, who might never visit it or would do so only randomly and infrequently, ensuring the building has nil chance of generating revenue over expenditure into profit.

Put it this way, the proposed stadium might be the best example we’ll ever find at Dunedin of new development that takes a seriously (holistically) unenlightened approach to providing ‘Green Age’ solutions to a needy low income, sparsely populated, aging community.

You see why it’s easier to deal with the building’s ‘environmental’ sustainability (piecemeal) than the wider politics of political manipulation and institutionalised thievery (redistribution of wealth).

So green architecture / building sustainability, what do we know?


Filed under Architecture, CST, Design, Economics, Hot air, Politics, Project management, Site, Stadiums