The Great Ocean Road, Geelong and Otway area is seriously starting to tick over with a buzz of opportunity and progression. I feel as though this area is literally on the cusp of exploding into a period of growth and expansion over the next decade and on and while normally the idea of ‘growth’ and expansion kind of terrifies me, I think perhaps that (fingers tightly crossed and ignoring previous bad planning and development), perhaps the region could be starting to head in the right direction of developing an area in a sustainable and ecologically friendly way. the reason I say this is due to a myriad of things, but specifically Future Proofing Geelong. Future Proofing Geelong is a partnership program between The City of Greater Geelong, EPA Victoria, Barwon Water, Deakin University, Committee for Geelong, Geelong Manufacturing Council and the Geelong Chamber of Commerce. Although it was a couple of years ago, the partnership signed a Sustainable Covenant that is an agreement for Future Proofing Geelong ‘to work together to see Geelong become nationally recognised as a city demonstrating sustainability leadership.’
With initiatives starting such as solar power on local community buildings, saving energy in major buildings of the CBD, Better Block (see more below) and a host more its all pretty exciting to know that there is a legitimate push by those in ‘higher places’ to make sure Geelong develops in a sustainable manner. Most excitingly, added to this list at the start of this year is Green Roofs Geelong. Here’s a little excerpt from the project bulletin… “Imagine you are looking out over central Geelong towards the bay from one of the multi level buildings on the hill…What were once bare, vacant roof spaces are now a community and environmental assets, which help cool the city centre on hot days and bring a sense of energy and life. A city that saves energy, recycles storm water and feels alive, where birds and insects buzz between buildings on cool breezes…”, UM YES PLEASE! sounds pretty incredible doesn’t it. A friend of mine recently returned from a trip overseas and immediately emailed me telling me about how blown away she was by the amount of green roofs and urban roof top farms throughout major cities all throughout the country (USA). I guess Australia is still pretty behind when it comes to developments like this in comparison with rest of the world so to think that Geelong is pushing to become ‘The Green Roof Capital of Australia’, is truly exciting. Green Roofs can help combat the heat island effect by moderating the heat of buildings and keeping it cool. They encourage us to engage in the natural world and entice flora and fauna back into the concrete jungle. While it is still in its pilot stage of development, if you’d like to know more, go and have a squiz at www.geelongsustainability.org.au and follow the links. watch this space.
Queenscliff Department of Primary Industries