Healthy Housing 2016 Technical Tour
Thursday 24th November

Note: this tour involves walking on flat and undulating ground: please wear appropriate footwear.  The temperature during your visit is likely to be somewhere between 18-28oC.  Comfortable clothes, a shady hat and sunscreen are advisable. A raincoat, water-proof coat or umbrella may come in handy (in case we get a summer storm!)  If it is a warm day, you may like to bring a re-fillable water container and try the Ecovillage’s fresh and healthy rainwater. Of course, don’t forget your camera!


08:30     Bus departs from QUT [Alice Street… bus zone].

10:00     Arrive at the Ecovillage at Currumbin.  Morning Tea in the community Old Dairy Facilities

10:30     Presentation: What was the vision for this residential community in terms of environmental quality and energy for individual dwellings and the estate as a whole?  Have they achieved                              this?

11:30     Guided tours of the village.  Three tours will be conducted simultaneously, walking through various parts of the village. Each tour will feature a walk through at least one Ecohamlet and                            one house, aspects of community infrastructure and key sustainability features.

13:00     Lunch at community facilities plus free time to wander through the village OR join a brief tour of the Waste Water Treatment Plant or RRR Centre

14:00     Bus leaves for the local Gold Coast beach (Currumbin Beach): 45 minutes to feel the sand between your toes, take photos across the water to Surfers Paradise, climb Elephant Rock etc

15:00     Bus departs for Brisbane

16:30     Bus arrives back at QUT



The Ecovillage is a multi‐award winning sustainable residential development on 110 hectares of the picturesque Currumbin Valley in the southern Gold Coast. Half of the estate is an environmental reserve for the protection of abundant and diverse native flora and fauna, and a further 30% is open space for recreational and horticultural activities. The estate is water self‐sufficient and adopts water‐sensitive urban design principles that also incorporate edible landscaping. Residential lots are organized into small neighbourhoods (Ecohamlets) connected by cycling and walking paths and shared laneways. All homes are constructed along passive design principles and incorporate considerations of low embodied energy, energy efficiency, renewable energy sources, healthy indoor air quality, social connectivity and low impact on the land. The average household energy consumption in this community is 60% less than the regional average.



  • Presentation on the vision for the estate and the real outcomes
  • Productive landscaping in a semi‐urban context
  • Community facilities and urban planning for social sustainability
  • Water sensitive urban design (rainwater collection & use, storm water management, waste water treatment & reticulation)
  • Options for transport sustainability
  • Biodiversity (e.g. free roaming kangaroos, abundant bird life, indigenous and native flora)
  • Tour of several low carbon, low toxicity homes: naturally ventilated passive solar design, energy and water efficiency, solar power and heating, dual water supply, eco building materials and products, food production.


Your participation in this tour supports the economic sustainability of this community:

  • ECCO (the community company)
  • Three Figs Café (the village’s local café)
  • Design and sustainability consultants (residents of the Ecovillage)
  • Residents (opening their homes to you)


This community has been subject to various research projects: technical and social.  You may wish to read some of these published findings:


NOTE: The tour is also open to partners/non-attendees at the conference.