Visionary sustainable housing project a boost for climate

The leading-edge project comprises 27 architect-designed 8.1 energy-rated houses, with around two-thirds of the total area dedicated to shared food gardens, wetlands, native gardens and orchards, as well as car parking on the perimeter.

Set on the outskirts of a Central Victorian town known for its flourishing arts and environmental movements, The Paddock provides a tranquil, bushland setting for those wishing to tread gently on the earth while connecting with like-minded neighbours.

The Hon Steve Bracks, AC, former Premier of Victoria, who attended the opening of The Paddock’s first stage on 5th December 2019, described it as ‘…a truly inspirational response to the climate change crisis and at the same time a highly innovative housing solution. I’ve no doubt that it will become a model for similar projects around Australia and internationally’.

Houses are 2 to 4 bedrooms and can be customised to requirements. All will feature a private garden area and parking space with unfettered access to the project’s gardens and food growing spaces, plus its community centre, a shared garden shed and studio. There’s even a community chook run!

This brainchild of Castlemaine ‘enviro-entrepreneurs’ Neil and Heather Barrett is being developed in four stages in accordance with the Living Building Challenge, a rigorous and pioneering standard for housing developments.

The Paddock’s houses are smaller than average-sized homes and will each be powered by a 4kW grid-connected solar system.

‘The energy bill savings for a Paddock home, compared to the average Victorian home, will be around $2,000 per year’, said Damien Moyse, Policy and Research Manager at Renew.

All seven of the project’s Stage 1 houses were purchased off-the-plan and are now occupied by very satisfied owners Stage 2 is set to commence in February 2020, with Stages 3 and 4 on track to be completed by the end of 2021.

Book your site visit

Visits will be held on site at 19 Reckleben Street, Castlemaine between 2pm and 3pm on Saturday and Sunday of every weekend until the end of February 2020. Be welcomed with a brief introduction by Neil and Heather in the Community Centre, then enjoy a walk around the project plus house inspections, followed by an afternoon tea or coffee.

Come and see what high-standard sustainable living with community connections looks like.

Source: The Paddock Castlemaine