In FY19 Landcom found that air quality was also a material issue for our stakeholders. Over FY20 and FY21, Landcom sought to understand what air quality means to the corporation. The work included collaboration between Landcom, SLR Consulting and the Department of Planning and Environment’s Environment, Energy and Science division.
The objective of the work is to improve air quality across Landcom communities, reduce exposure of our communities to air pollutants, drive leadership in the management of air quality in urban development and share knowledge with the rest of the industry. Our intention is for the approach to considering air quality to support best practice urban development activities, such as what our Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD) Guideline did for both industry and councils.
The outcome of our collaboration was an Air Quality Framework, which identified five focus areas to improve air quality within Landcom’s control. The framework was then translated to guidelines, allowing Landcom to pilot screening assessments at communities to further understand air quality risks and possible ways to mitigate impacts.
The five focus areas are:
- integrating air quality considerations into our planning and design process
- reducing air quality impacts from construction
- minimising exposure to traffic emissions
- low emission home heating options
- empowering the community.
In FY22 Landcom also added air quality questions to our Healthy and Inclusive Places Survey (HIPS). Residents reported a high level of satisfaction on Air Quality, including 70% rating air quality as good or very good. Further, compared to other places residents had lived, 62% found our communities better than where they lived previously in Sydney and 70% better for those who have not lived anywhere else in Sydney. The survey also highlighted areas of concern for residents, providing insights to inform future opportunities for Landcom communities to better respond to air quality.