Modern building with a reflection of trees and blue skies showing the connection between sustainable development

April 18, 2024

At Far East Consortium (FEC), we are committed to excellence in residential property development, ensuring our projects not only meet the needs of today but also embrace the challenges and opportunities of tomorrow. 

As Australian cities grapple with the pressures of climate change, sustainable development emerges as a critical pillar in urban planning.

Challenges of Climate Change

Australia faces a myriad of climate threats, from intensifying heatwaves to rising sea levels and extreme weather events. 

These challenges pose significant risks to urban infrastructure, public health, and overall livability. With cities increasingly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, innovative strategies are needed to enhance resilience and adaptability.

Sustainable Development Strategies

To create resilient and sustainable cities, a multi-faceted approach is required:

Urban Design

Embracing concepts like green infrastructure involves incorporating natural elements such as parks, green roofs, and permeable pavements into urban landscapes. These features not only beautify the environment but also help manage stormwater runoff, reduce the urban heat island effect, and provide habitats for wildlife. 

Walkable neighbourhoods are designed to prioritise pedestrians, with interconnected streets, wide sidewalks, and amenities within easy walking distance. This encourages physical activity, reduces reliance on cars, and fosters a sense of community. 

Urban densification involves increasing the population density within existing urban areas through mixed-use developments and higher building densities which optimises land use, reduces urban sprawl, and supports more efficient infrastructure and services.


Prioritising public transport involves investing in efficient and accessible transit systems such as buses, trains and trams. This not only reduces congestion on roads but also lowers greenhouse gas emissions and improves air quality. Cycling infrastructure, such as those being included at Queen’s Wharf, includes dedicated bike lanes, bike-sharing programs, and secure bike parking facilities. Encouraging cycling as a mode of transportation promotes physical activity, reduces traffic congestion, and mitigates carbon emissions. 

Reducing car dependence involves creating policies and infrastructure that make alternative modes of transportation more attractive, such as congestion pricing, carpool lanes, and pedestrian-friendly streetscapes.

Energy Efficiency

Promoting energy-efficient buildings entails implementing design strategies and technologies that minimise energy consumption and maximise performance. This includes features such as insulation, energy-efficient appliances, LED lighting, and passive solar design. Integrating renewable energy sources involves harnessing natural resources like solar, wind, and geothermal energy to generate electricity and heat. This reduces reliance on fossil fuels, lowers carbon emissions, and enhances energy security.

Water Management

Implementing sustainable water management practices includes strategies such as rainwater harvesting, greywater recycling, and green infrastructure. West Side Place, for example, uses rainwater harvesting for swimming pool replenishment.

These measures help conserve water resources, reduce stormwater runoff, and mitigate flood risks. Enhancing drought resilience involves promoting water-efficient landscaping, enforcing water conservation measures, and investing in water recycling and desalination technologies. This ensures water security during periods of drought and supports sustainable urban development.

Benefits of Sustainable Development

The benefits of sustainable urban planning extend beyond environmental gains:


Sustainable development initiatives have the potential to stimulate significant economic growth by fostering innovation, entrepreneurship, and investment. By prioritising sustainable practices such as energy efficiency, green infrastructure, and renewable energy, cities can create new industries and job opportunities in sectors such as clean energy technology, green construction, and environmental consulting. 

Additionally, investments in sustainable infrastructure projects, such as public transit systems and renewable energy installations, generate substantial economic returns by improving productivity, reducing operating costs, and attracting new businesses and residents to the area. Sustainable urban planning also enhances property values and market attractiveness, leading to increased real estate development and investment in sustainable communities.


Improving public health outcomes is a crucial social benefit of sustainable urban planning. Sustainable cities prioritise active transportation modes such as walking and cycling, which promote physical activity and reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. Access to green spaces and parks in urban areas improves mental health and well-being by providing opportunities for relaxation, recreation, and social interaction. Additionally, sustainable urban planning fosters community cohesion by creating vibrant, inclusive, and walkable neighbourhoods where residents can connect with one another, participate in local events and activities, and build social networks. This sense of community belonging enhances social capital and resilience, leading to stronger and more resilient communities.


Preserving natural habitats, reducing pollution, and mitigating climate risks are critical environmental benefits of sustainable urban planning. Sustainable cities prioritise land use policies that protect and conserve natural ecosystems, such as parks, wetlands, and wildlife habitats, which provide essential ecosystem services such as air and water purification, carbon sequestration, and flood control. By reducing reliance on fossil fuels and promoting energy efficiency and renewable energy sources, sustainable urban planning helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate climate change impacts such as heatwaves, storms, and sea-level rise. Additionally, sustainable cities implement pollution control measures, such as green building standards, waste management strategies, and transportation emissions regulations, to improve air and water quality and protect human health and the environment. Overall, sustainable urban planning contributes to a healthier planet by safeguarding biodiversity, reducing ecological footprints, and promoting ecological resilience.

Challenges and Opportunities

While challenges such as funding and governance exist, they present opportunities for innovation and collaboration. By leveraging technological advancements and engaging with communities, sustainable urban planning can become a catalyst for positive change.


Sustainable urban planning is essential for building cities that are resilient, equitable, and prosperous in the face of climate change and population growth. At FEC, we are proud to lead the way in incorporating sustainable practices into our developments, ensuring a brighter future for Australian cities.

Learn more about eco-friendly property development trends here.