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High Life Expo 2017 - that's a wrap

Melbourne's 2017 High Life Expo was full of thought provoking presentations from experts and apartment owners about making apartment buildings sustainable and better to live in.   Read more »

Congratulations to 38 Westbury St

St Kilda East apartment group known as '38 Westbury Street' has been announced as a finalist in the Built Environment category for this year's Premier's Sustainability Awards for their Green Roof in the City program.  Read more »

Help apartments go solar

The University of New South Wales (UNSW) is researching how installing solar on apartment buildings can be made easier... and they need help from everyone who lives in or owns in an apartment building!  Read more »

Social connection for better buildings

A socially connected building is more than just a nice-to-have: it can help facilitate good decision making, get projects off the ground, improve security and more. But how do you create an apartment community?   Read more »

Renters can too!

Sustainability and comfort aren’t just the prerogative of apartment owners. If you're renting there are still things you can do. Take a look inside Amy's rented apartment to see what she's done.  Read more »

Inside an apartment reno

When Luke, his partner and their new baby moved into this two-level apartment in Fitzroy in 2012, it was dark, had meagre storage space and poor thermal performance. Now, it's just perfect and affordable to run.  Read more »

Bit by bit for better apartment efficiency

When Kevin and Jenny moved in the 19th century red brick building, the apartment was gracious but not very efficient - cold in winter and hot in summer. They started out with small projects they improve the energy efficiency and thermal comfort of their apartment.  Read more »

Nicholson Gardens retrofit

Nicholson Garden apartment owner, Miriam Robinson, used to watch the sun shining on the building’s roofs and think that someone should really do something with that. One day she decided that ‘someone’ should be her.  Read more »

Green roof glory

From the street, the white-painted brick three-storey 1950s block of flats at 38 Westbury St looks pretty similar to its neighbours. But head up the back stairs to the roof and a surprise is in store – a verdant surprise, waving gently in the breeze.   Read more »

Republic Tower: sustainability stars

Republic Tower was one of the first high-rise residential apartment buildings in Melbourne. Find out what sustainability initiatives has been implemented and how the FM negotiates a reduction in the ‘peak demand’ component of the electricity bill of the building.  Read more »

A Hero's journey

Read about the Hero Apartment building's amazing journey to improve its liveability and environmental sustainability performance.  Read more »

Facilities Management Good Practice Guide

The Facilities Management Good Practice Guide developed by the Facility Management Association of Australia provides an overview of facilities management in multi-unit residential buildings, focusing on common areas and shared services.   Read more »

The Trev Project

How an ordinary bloke’s attempts to be a good neighbour snowballed into a new community development project and led him to discover the big, beating heart of North Melbourne.  Read more »

Better Apartments Discussion Paper

In May 2015, the Better Apartments discussion paper kick-started a statewide conversation with the community, government and industry to help shape potential future apartment design guidelines and mechanisms.   Read more »

Consumer property law review

Consumer Affairs Victoria is undertaking a review of consumer property laws to improve laws about sale of land, the conduct of real estate agents, conveyancers and owners corporation managers. Consumer Affairs Victoria invites your input into the review.   Read more »

Green roof retrofitting

St Kilda East residents have retrofitted their big empty rooftop and created a productive and ecologically beneficial garden oasis, and they documented the whole process in the hope of inspiring others.  Read more »

Strata Management Partnership

City of Melbourne is running a new project to test how strata managers can improve customer experience and positively influence the livability of the buildings they manage.   Read more »

Solar Panels Go Sky High

Read Parkville resident Tim Esmonde's story about his experience of installing solar panels on his 7 story apartment: "Royal Park isn’t the only spectacular view we have. When I first stood on the building’s roof, in every direction I saw solar panels soaking up the sun. All these other homes were enjoying the dual benefits of solar panels – reducing energy costs and greenhouse emissions."   Read more »

Towers of Support

Towers of Support is a Regency Towers residents group that provides short-term support for residents who need it. Smart Blocks recently spoke with Maureen Capp, who initiated the program, to gather inspiration and advice for apartment block residents interested in initiating something similar.  Read more »

Rooftop solar for apartments

The options for solar powered apartment blocks continue to expand. Perth-based developer Psaros has recently completed an 86 apartment development that has incorporated a 180kw rooftop system, wired so that each apartment has its own 2kw PV array.   Read more »

Growing Green Guide

Growing Green Guide provides technical advice on how to design, build and manage green roofs, walls and facades so they can provide multiple benefits over a long time span for building owners and the wider community.  Read more »

Powering through

Saxon Mailey's lifelong fascination with electricity fuelled his determination to lower his West Perth block's energy use. At first, his neighbours were unsure, but energy tracking data soon had them convinced.  Read more »

Smart Blocks wins Melbourne Award

Smart Blocks has won the Melbourne Award for Contribution to Sustainability by a community organisation! We wouldn’t be here without you – the owners, managers and Smart Blocks who have taken up the challenge and shown what is possible. Thank you. This is yours.  Read more »

Bright sparks dazzled by savings

Often, all it takes is one resident with a bright idea to sow the seeds for an energy efficiency tune-up in a strata building. This East Melbourne block used a Smart Blocks grant to make changes and watched their electricity bill plunge.  Read more »

Want to make a difference in your community?

Got a big idea to make your patch more sustainable? From sharing, energy saving and bulk-buys to water harvesting and neighbourhood compost, Yarra City Council is looking for enthusiastic groups wanting to make a difference in their community.  Read more »

Smart Blocks wins Premier's Design Award

We’re thrilled! Smart Blocks has won Best in Category for Service Design at the Victorian Premier's Design Awards, in recognition of how our ground-breaking program is helping make your residential strata building more sustainable.   Read more »

Small steps to big savings

Waterloo apartment owner Catherine Lezer never imagined how much electricity and money her building could save by changing some light bulbs. By retrofitting energy efficient lighting in all common areas, her building has cutting its energy use by a massive 42 per cent – and they couldn't be happier.  Read more »

Strata managers get smart

Strata managers like The Knight Alliance are seeing the value in upgrading the energy efficiency of their buildings. “To say ‘We're Smart Blocks managers’ shows we are progressive and proactive,” says company director Gregor Evans.   Read more »

Smart Blocks goes solar

Well over a million Australian households now boast a solar electricity system but what about apartments? We don’t want apartment owners to miss out on the many benefits of solar so we’re working hard to complete two brand new Smart Blocks project modules.  Read more »

Smart Blocks wins Industry Innovation Award

This award acknowledges initiatives that introduce new ideas to facilities management. Thanks to our partners — Strata Community Australia (SCA), City of Melbourne, City of Sydney, Owners Corporation Network and Green Strata — who have made this project the truly collaborative and successful project it is.   Read more »