Metlifecare Ltd’s The Orchards retirement village in Glenfield has become the first in New Zealand to achieve a homestar design rating, denoting a higher level of efficiency & sustainability than standard New Zealand homes.
17 apartments in stage one of the new village have been rated 6 homestar design. The Orchards is the first retirement village to gain a homestar design rating for apartments, and the number achieving the rating is the largest number of apartments in a single complex to do so.
Stage 1 of The Orchards has a care facility and the independent-living apartment building, due for completion in mid-2015. Landscaped gardens, resident vegetable plots & composting will be developed in stage 2 of the project, also under construction.
Alan Simpkin, from Arcline Architecture, included sustainability features such as solar water heating & a large rainwater tank system to supply communal areas. Apartments feature energy-efficient heat pumps, double glazing, LED lighting and thermal insulation to a higher level than building code requirements.
Water-efficient fittings have been used in showers, taps, toilets and the kitchen’s feature 3.5-star WELS-rated dishwashers. Carpet, paint, insulation & wall linings have been selected with approved eco-labels & low VOC emissions.
Green Building Council chief executive Alex Cutler said: “A new home built just to meet building code would rate around 4 Homestar, so a 6 Homestar residence will be noticeably warmer, healthier & cost less to run than a typical new home. This is particularly important to people as they grow older. Metlifecare is setting an exciting precedent in the retirement village industry which I hope will inspire others.”
EnviroSpec Ltd managing director Alex Reiche carried out the Homestar rating.
Attribution: Green Building Council release.