Some hope the new Shepparton Art Museum will make more than an artistic statement, but also provide a shining example of green building design.
The landmark SAM to be built on the shores of Victoria Park Lake has the potential to become a best practice showcase for sustainable buildings in the region, according to a local environment group.
The estimated two-year build for the $35million, five-storey facility is set to start next year.
And Goulburn Valley Environment Group president John Pettigrew said some see the building, hoped to be an iconic, postcard entrance to the city from the south, as being ‘‘a statement of change in this region’’.
He said the building could be more than a scene-setting piece of building design, but also a way to promote best practices.
‘‘A statement building, that we are ready to take next step .., to adapt to a changing climate, to changing market conditions.
‘‘We’ve always seen the SAM building as an opportunity to make a statement.’’
The president was unsure whether opportunities still existed for commentary about sustainable design features, adding the community may well be ‘‘living on trust that those involved in it, have committed as much as possible to those outcomes we think (are) important’’.
‘‘(We’re) keen that SAM is a standout building ... that we look back on and say, ‘Yeah there wasn’t too many mistakes there ... they did a pretty good job when took into account the energy requirements’,’’ he said.
Mr Pettigrew understood certain requirements were necessary to protect assets in an art museum, presenting ‘‘limits to what you can do to cut down energy’’.
‘‘We understand in a building like that you can’t necessarily go as far as you would like.
‘‘When you can’t do that, it’s critical that the energy used is renewable energy.
‘‘They’re the sort of things we’ve been keen to get incorporated into the new SAM building,’’ he said.
Mr Pettigrew said it could be possible for off site energy generation for such facilities.