Victoria, British Columbia (Dockside Green)
“Victoria, British Columbia, plans to be carbon-neutral by 2012. Its Dockside Green pro ject brings that goal closer to realization. The environmentally sustainable plans for Dockside Green combine residential, commercial, light industrial and green space on 15 acres (roughly 0.06 square kilometers) of harbor-front land.
How will Dockside Green achieve its goal to be the first carbon-neutral community inÂ North America? Through a combination of green solutions for buildings, transportation, energy and waste treatment.
Let’s begin with buildings: Those of Dockside Green are being constructed with reclaimed wood from forests that were submerged by reservoirs. Energy-efficient appliances and fixtures (such as motion-sensing light switches),Â green roofsÂ (rooftop gardens), andÂ carbon footprintÂ monitors (that allow residents to track their heat, energy and water use over time) are outfitted inside homes.
It’s unlikely you’ll find a car or two parked in driveways, either. Residents of Victoria, and now Dockside Green, take part in a clean-fuel and hybrid car-sharing program (even the cars areÂ Smart). In addition, Dockside Green plans include bike and pedestrian paths, subsidized public transit and a harbor ferry.
Energy and waste treatment will be self-contained within Dockside Green. One hundred percent of waste will be treated on-site, and the treated water will be reused to flush toilets and irrigate gardens. AÂ biomass-gasification plantÂ will turn wood waste into energy for heat and hot water.
This innovative green community is under way currently, with the first of three neighborhoods opening in 2009. Upon completion, the entire community will be home to about 2,500 people.”
“Sherford, in south Devon, is the eco-project of Prince Charles. It will be home to 12,000 people and is planned for completion by 2020. Royal advisors consider it Britain’s greenest future community.
The proposed community will take advantage of cutting-edge green building designs and materials but will look like a traditional English town. Buildings will be constructed with sustainable materials gathered mostly from within a 50-mile (80-kilometer) radius of the site; water and sewer waste will be recycled.
Homes and workplaces alike will put their rooftops to work. The majority of buildings will haveÂ solar powersystems, and vegetation will cover theÂ roofsÂ of commercial buildings. About half of Sherford’s power will be supplied from renewable sources in the community: In addition to solarÂ power, plans call forÂ windÂ turbines.
Lastly, a walkable urban layout will put residences, retail stores and industry in close proximity, reducing the need for cars. In fact, cars will be banned from some areas of the town. Did we mention new homeowners receive a free bicycle?”
Dongtan City, China Â Â Â
“Dongtan will be a city of three villages that meet to form a city centre. The first demonstrator phase of Dongtan aims to be completed by 2010, in time for the World Expo in Shanghai, and will accommodate a population of up to 5,000. Later phases of development will see the city grow to hold a population of around 80,000 by 2020 and up to 500,000 by 2050.
The delicate nature of the Dongtan wetlands adjacent to the site has been one of the driving factors of the city’s design. We plan to protect and enhance the existing wetlands by returning agricultural land to a wetland state creating a ‘buffer-zone’ between the city and the mudflats – at its narrowest point, this ‘buffer-zone’ will be 3.5 kilometres wide.
The project will increase bio-diversity on Chongming Island, and will create a city that runs entirely on renewable energy for its buildings, its infrastructure and its transport needs. Dongtan will recover, recycle and reuse 90% of all waste in the city, with the eventual aim of becoming a zero waste city.
Dongtan eco-city incorporates many traditional Chinese design features and combines them with a sustainable approach to modern living, but not at the expense of creating a city that isÂ recognizableÂ as a â€˜Chineseâ€™ city.
With the project now entering the implementation phase, SIIC and Arup have been joined by HSBC and Sustainable Development Capital LLP (SDCL) in a long-term strategic partnership to develop the commercial and financing strategy for Dongtan and other eco-cities in China. A key element of this is the Dongtan Institute for Sustainability which will initially be based in Tongji University. We hope the Institute will become one of the worldâ€™s centres of excellence for examining the connection between the environment and economic performance.”
Masdar City, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
“No cars, no waste, no pollution. Doable? Such a city is slated to rise from the oil-rich grounds in Abu
Masdar’s sustainable urban development will take advantage of wind, hydrogen and solar-photovoltaic energy sources. Wastewater will be treated andÂ recycledÂ into irrigation systems.
In addition, Masdar’s transportation goals are ambitious. Fossil-fuel burning cars are banned from the city in lieu of an electric personal light-rail system — small, programmable cars that run only when you need to go somewhere, and a pedestrian-friendly city layout.
Masdar is already under construction and will develop over several phases, with completion expected in 2016 [sourceÂ Inhabitat]. Up to 50,000 people are expected to live in Masdar, and the first residents will likely move in sometime during 2009 [CNET].”
Photo Source: MasdarUAE.com