THE Royal Australian Institute of Architects WA chapter has successfully convinced the Commonwealth Government to designate 2004 as the Year of the Built Environment.
RAIA president Warren Kerr said The Year of the Built Environment was aimed at fostering community debate regarding the nature and quality of the built environment and what legacy the community wanted to leave for future generations.
He said the initiative would provide an excellent opportunity to demonstrate the potential outcomes of the State’s Sustainability Strategy and the linkages between local and State government agencies in improving our built environment.
“Primarily, the objective would be to foster awareness of the role that the community can play in determining the form of the built environment and to foster interest in examining ways in which planning and design of the built environment can be improved,” Mr Kerr said.
Activities proposed for the year include seminars on ecologically sustainable developments, consideration of healthy communities as a criterion for urban design, and competitions for more energy efficient housing.
The important part the built environment has played in the history of WA will also be recognised in events to celebrate the 175th anniversary of European settlement in 2004.
The formation of the Swan River Colony in 1829 initiated a heritage of European buildings and English town planning principles that have shaped WA cities and towns to the present day.
Mr Kerr said that during 2004, the progress Western Australians had made in creating the places in which they lived, worked and played, and consider how they could develop their build environment that was functional, sustainable, energy efficient, flexible and delightful.
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