The purpose of this paper is to present outcomes from a post-occupancy evaluation (POE) of a sustainable university building development.
A POE was conducted for a sustainable university building in Melbourne, Australia. The method included interviews with key stakeholders involved in the design, construction and occupation of the building. The interviews were complemented by conducting a Builder User Satisfaction survey and analysis of two year’s worth of building performance data.
While technically the building saw a significant improvement in performance in comparison to existing buildings at the university, it ultimately did not meet its design performance goals as determined by the design rating. The interviews revealed limited formal documenting of lessons learnt and the challenges associated with using a sustainable and innovative building to drive cultural change. A major success was the realisation by the university of the benefits that the systematic POE provided. Lessons are now being applied to other new and refurbished buildings on campus, with POE now an integrated part of these processes.
While there are some studies of sustainable university operations and buildings, many focus on one or two parts of the process and fail to include evaluation of the full sustainability approach to check if stated goals have been met. This paper begins to address this gap. Learnings from the research are applicable to the wider building development industry and demonstrate the important role universities can play in shaping the sustainability of urban environments.
The authors wish to acknowledge the contribution of Dr Ian Ridley who was a member of the research team who contributed to the research and report which this paper is based upon.
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