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32. Construction - Why consider building the best house you can?

If you drive down almost any suburban street you will most likely find at least one red brick, tri-faced dwelling built in the 60’s (Similar to the one pictured at the top of this page). They’re an Australian institution, still in abundance and scattered throughout suburbia.  To those building them, it would have seemed so improbable that their work would still contribute to the Australian streetscape 70 years later.

But now it is harder to make buildings last as long. Many current construction projects won’t, because they have not been planned to last long. Buildings are becoming redundant much quicker than they used to because of the acceleration of climate change, technology, and study in the field of health.

But if you plan and future proof your home in these areas, there is no reason why an exceptional design cannot last well past the 2090’s. The choice that comes with renovating and building is that you either contribute a piece of history and legacy to many future generations or you build a house that will become redundant before it can get there.

The fate of redundant homes is to often demolish, just like many 60’s brick houses that now cannot cope with our extreme summers and winters. These homes end up in landfill, contributing to over 28% of all landfill waste. That’s an average of 400kg per person per year. It is not sustainable for us to continue to dispose at the rate we are.

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