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Curtin celebrates sustainable style at Italian Design Day in Perth

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A presentation by the co-creator of Curtin’s Legacy Living Lab (L3) – a circular economy building in Fremantle designed for disassembly, deconstruction and relocation – will take centre stage at Italian Design Day in Perth this year.

Held on March 20 the theme for Italian Design Day 2024 is “Fabricating Value – Inclusivity, Innovation and Sustainability”.

Organised by Curtin’s School of Design and the Built Environment, from the Faculty of Humanities, in collaboration with the Consulate of Italy in Perth, the event forms part of Perth Design Week and will highlight important trends in Italian design and architecture, and showcase projects by Curtin University’s Italian academics, designers and architects.

Senior lecturer from the Curtin School of Design and the Built Environment and co-creator of the Legacy Living Lab (L3) Dr Roberto Minunno said L3 was an innovative project exploring sustainable construction and circular economy principles and he was looking forward to sharing the details of the project on Italian Design Day.

“L3 challenges traditional construction practices by emphasising modularity, adaptability and the use of sustainable materials, aimed at promoting low-carbon construction and cutting-edge waste management,” Dr Minunno said.

“L3 serves as a learning platform, encouraging the exploration of sustainable practices and the potential for policy influence. It invites stakeholders to consider new ways of building that prioritise sustainability and resilience, offering insights that could inspire broader adoption across the industry.

“In the specific example of L3, a traditional build of its size would have created about 50 tonnes of CO2 emissions, whereas the modular Living Lab build only created 5 tonnes of CO2 emissions – a huge benefit for the environment.

“A non-modular build would normally have a concrete foundation or slab, but L3 was built using a steel micro-pile footing system, consisting of a series of steel poles that are skewed into the ground at specific angles, to anchor the building.

“This alone saved 20 tonnes of concrete, compared to 700 kilograms of steel – which, unlike concrete, can be recycled.”

Italian Consul in Western Australia, Sergio Federico Nicolaci said: “We are very proud to celebrate the Italian Design Day in Perth in partnership with Curtin University, a leading institution in the field of design, innovation and sustainability.”

Celebrated around the world, Italian Design Day includes hundreds of activities presented by the global network of Italian Embassies and Consulates, Italian Cultural Institutes and Italian Trade Agencies-ICE offices.

This collaboration for Italian Design Day in Perth is an initiative arising from the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed by the Consulate of Italy in Perth and Curtin in October 2023.

The alliance has a strong focus on sustainability and will see increased collaboration between Curtin and several Italian universities on research and other academic activities, plus several staff and student exchange programs.

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